Building on its success at creating a graduate cohort equipped to bring about positive change in the food system, the Interdisciplinary Food Systems Teaching and Learning (IFSTAL) programme is entering its fifth year in October 2019.
For the 2019/20 Year, the University of Oxford, University of Warwick and the London Centre for Integrative Research on Agriculture and Health (LCIRAH) – comprising the Royal Veterinary College (RVC), the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS), and London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine (LSHTM) – will collaborate to provide the free teaching and learning programme. With the funding from HEFCE now coming to a close, City, University of London and the University of Reading – both participating institutions in the first four years – are not able to remain as collaborative partners for 2019/20.
The charity Compassion in World Farming (CIWF) is lending IFSTAL its official backing for 2019/20. Founded in 1967, CIWF works with some of the world’s largest food retailers, producers and manufacturers. The organisation is aligned with the IFSTAL view that change is needed in the food system
Launched in 2015, IFSTAL addresses the urgent need for a workforce skilled in food systems thinking. With over 1,400 students engaged to date, IFSTAL’s alumni network is already having an influence in the global food system as former students take on roles across the food system.
IFSTAL’s blend of interdisciplinary learning and emphasis on skills needed in the workplace has drawn praise from both the food industry and academia. “We’re really pleased this innovative teaching programme is launching for a fifth year,” said John Ingram, Programme Leader and founder of IFSTAL. “IFSTAL is designed to address the need to bring about system transformation. It equips students with the broader knowledge to apply their specific disciplines more effectively to help bring about this change.”
Helping students from a wide range of disciplines, countries and backgrounds acquire the skills to collaborate for change is a cornerstone of the programme. Students learn in an interactive manner; they have the opportunity to attend workshops, lectures and webinars, and a one-week summer school, supported by a wealth of learning materials on an online portal. Setting transformation of the food system firmly in its sights, the curriculum engages actively with the food system, from global food retailers and food businesses to NGOs and individuals making a difference.
Launch events planned
Graduate students from all disciplines who are studying at the partner institutions are eligible to register for IFSTAL. Live launches take place on 17 and 18 October 2019. Click here for more details.