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The Crawford Fund Annual Conference 2021

The Crawford Fund’s annual conference is a highlight of Australia’s agricultural development and food security calendar. For almost 30 years they have drawn significant focus to issues worthy of global and Australian attention. Making last year’s conference not possible, and overarching this year’s event, is the coronavirus pandemic. However, even outside of such extreme circumstances, the vast increase in and growing complexity of international trade, travel, tourism and density of development have placed ever growing challenges on maintaining plant and animal biosecurity, halting the rapid spread of infectious diseases and strengthening the protection of biodiversity. 

The hybrid conference will explore the specific risks to plant, animal, and human health, how these factors are putting global food and nutrition security in peril, and the emerging technological and management solutions to overcome these threats.

In keeping with COVID-restrictions, international speakers will be streamed live for their presentations and Q&A. All Australian speakers will be present, and the Crawford Fund expect to again produce an opportunity for those from development, research, academia, the private sector, primary production, NGO and advocacy groups, and from decision and policy-making to come together at what is the most significant networking event in agriculture for development. The Crawford Fund will also be offering the opportunity for those not able to attend in person to attend virtually, and hope this will make it possible for a broader international audience to benefit from discussion.

With the conference being followed by the UN Food Systems Summit, the UN Climate Change Conference and the Nutrition for Growth Summit, the emphasis will be on food systems, but the Crawford Fund also see as important the way in which food production systems interact with human health in terms of zoonotic diseases and their spread.  The Crawford Fund also see a focus on biodiversity as important in that natural systems may provide a reservoir of information and resources that can be used to develop solutions for future proofing society against emerging risks.

At the specially designed conference networking dinner on 13 December, the Crawford Fund are proud to have this year’s Sir John Crawford Memorial address presented by Dr Agnes Kalibata, UN Secretary General’s Special Envoy to the 2021 Food Systems Summit and President of the Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa.

On 14 December, our full-day event will be held in the Great Hall in Parliament House, Canberra.

The event brings together leading international and Australian thinkers and practitioners for an interactive day that will include:

  • Keynote presentations from eminent international, public and private sector experts.
  • Targeted overview presentations on the status quo and innovative policy and development project options that address a set of significant nexus issues, highlighting where action is needed or underway around biosecurity, health and trade.
  • A set of examples of impact delivered as case studies in short, rapid-fire presentations by leading researchers across industries, global regions and agricultural sectors.

By providing extended question and answer sessions and opportunities for informal networking, the Fund’s annual conference will allow participants to contribute and to place these nexus issues into a context relevant to their lives and work.

The conference audience included views from science, agriculture, politics, business and civil society to help focus our attention on the way forward.

The Crawford Fund look forward to seeing you at our 2021 conference and hope that the focus on these significant issues improves understanding and appreciation on future directions to ensure food and nutrition security in an increasingly inter-connected world.

This year, with COVID related international travel restrictions, we have some keynote and overview speakers presenting live and virtually, and all our Australian speakers present in the room.

The Crawford Fund 2021 Annual Conference will follow the requirements of local, State and Federal COVID-19 policies.

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