A new collaboration to strengthen resilient urban food systems

As of May 1, 2019, Hivos is the host of the Secretariat of the Global Partnership on Sustainable Urban Agriculture and Food Systems, RUAF. Hivos will join the RUAF Global Partnership, host its Secretariat, and take over part of the portfolio and staff of the Dutch-based RUAF Foundation. Having the RUAF Secretariat on board reiterates Hivos’ strong commitment to promote sustainable food for all and develop closer collaboration with cities in its programs.


Both Hivos and the RUAF Global Partnership see great added value of this collaboration, through which they can build sustainable city region food systems together. Both organizations have a large track record in developing these systems and will combine their experiences and strengths to further develop citizen-driven innovation and participation, and social entrepreneurship in city region food system planning and policy. This will enable citizens and local entrepreneurs to connect in multi-actor platforms, ensuring inclusive policy planning in cities and their hinterlands.


Proven track records

Hivos has a rich track record of programs in sustainable food systems and inclusive food governance. The organization can count on networks, connections, and partners, as well as programs developed worldwide over the past 50 years to build and scale sustainable and inclusive city region food systems. Carol Gribnau, Director Green Society at Hivos, adds: “By hosting RUAF, Hivos becomes part of a network that is celebrating 20 years since its formation in 1999. This partnership enables us to become the leading international community of practice and collectively develop innovative solutions to food systems in towns and cities.”

RUAF has worked in the past 20 years in 50 cities in more than 40 different countries. It is supporting local and subnational governments, urban producer organizations, and other actors with training, technical assistance, action-research, and policy advice on the development of resilient urban food systems. RUAF also facilitates the CITYFOOD Network, together with Local Governments for Sustainability (ICLEI). This network of cities aims to accelerate local and regional government action on sustainable and resilient city-region food systems.


Future commitments

Current projects will continue and new projects will be developed. The website will remain in operation, but will change its look and feel. In addition, the Urban Agriculture Magazine continues to be published. As a matter of fact, Hivos and the RUAF Global Partnership will soon jointly publish no. 36 on Food Policy Councils.

The RUAF Global Partnership

Current RUAF partners include:

-International Water Management Institute (IWMI) based in Colombo, Sri Lanka;

- Laurier Centre for Sustainable Food Systems (CSFS) in Canada;

-Institute of Geographical Sciences and Natural Resources Research of the Chinese Academy of Sciences (IGSNRR/CAS), based in Beijing, China;

-City of Toronto, Canada, Food Strategy team and the Toronto Food Policy Council;

-City  of Ghent, Belgium;

-CONQUITO, the Economic Promotion Agency of the Municipality of the Metropolitan District of Quito;

-Economia e Sostenibilita (ESTA) from Milan, Italy;

-Mazingira Institute, Nairobi, Kenya.


About Hivos

Based on a track record of 50 years of partnering with frontrunners in daring, innovative and impactful development programs, Hivos seeks new and creative solutions to persistent global problems; solutions created by people taking their lives into their own hands.

We offer a positive counterbalancing force against discrimination, inequality, abuse of power and the unsustainable use of our planet’s resources. Our mission is to innovate for social change. With smart projects in the right places, we work towards more open and green societies.


Contact details

Carol Gribnau, Director Green Society at Hivos: cgribnau [at] hivos [dot] org

René van Veenhuizen, rvanveenhuizen [at] hivos [dot] org  / r [dot] van [dot] veenhuizen [at] ruaf [dot] org

Marielle Dubbeling: m [dot] dubbeling [at] ruaf [dot] org

Follow us on www.ruaf.org and www.hivos.org.