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Sustainable Agriculture 3.0 (SA3): Nutrition, National Security and Nature Conservation

Keynote by Dr. Bram Govaerts, Global Director of Innovative Business Strategies and Lead for Sustainable Intensification, International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center (CIMMYT).

Followed by a moderated panel discussion with:

  • Donnie Smith (moderator), former CEO of Tyson Foods, UT Animal Science alumnus
  • Hon. Sharon Burke, Senior Advisor, International Security Program and Resource Security Program, New America
  • Ms. Pipa Elias, Soil health strategy manager, The Nature Conservancy
  • Dr. Sarah Colby, Associate Professor, Public Health Nutrition, University of Tennessee


In the 1950s and 60s, the Green Revolution increased the yields of cereal crops to such an extent that billions of people were saved from starvation throughout much of the developing world. Technological developments in subsequent decades further improved production efficiency. These periods of improved agricultural production have largely kept pace with global population growth and improved soil quality and conservation. If these two phases of productivity intensification are versions 1.0 and 2.0 of sustainable agriculture, then what comes next? By 2050, the world population is expected to grow by 20 to 30 percent and food production will need to outpace this rate of growth, as per capita demand for calories and protein will also increase. At the same time, the Earth’s finite natural resources, particularly water and arable land area, are already strained. Climate change and energy insecurity present crosscutting challenges to the present order of the global food system. Against this backdrop, further increasing crop yields while maintaining or improving their nutritional value requires a new paradigm of sustainable agriculture.

Sustainable Agriculture 3.0 (SA3) must intentionally confront the role of agriculture not only in delivering nutrition to a growing world population, but also in conserving natural resources for future generations, mitigating climate change, supplying energy, and enhancing security by strengthening resilience of the food system to shocks, such as extreme climate events and geopolitical disruptions. SA3 must be founded on a transdisciplinary framework that integrate across not just food, energy and water systems, but also social, economic, and political systems.

Thursday, February 28, 2019 at 9:00am to 11:30am

Howard H. Baker Jr. Center for Public Policy, Toyota Auditorium
1640 Cumberland Ave., Knoxville, TN 37996

Event Type

Meetings & Conferences




Current Students, Faculty & Staff, Alumni

Herbert College of Agriculture
Contact Name

Tom Gill

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