Tackling the “Zero Hunger Challenge” by 2030: A Conversation with Robert Zeigler
As the United Nations conceives Sustainable Development Goals to tackle global problems through 2030, food security and ending hunger are foremost concerns. Currently, more than half of the world’s people rely on rice for most of their calories and nutrients, with demand particularly high in Asia and parts of Africa. Yet it is precisely these areas where dwindling land and the prospect of climate change have kept rice production from keeping pace.
At the forefront of tackling this challenge is the International Rice Research Institute (IRRI), which since the 1960s has helped lead scientific research in developing rice varieties that are more resilient and nutritious. IRRI has also developed technologies to assist in rice production, built an understanding of optimal rice farming practices, and helped to distribute this knowledge to where it is most needed across the world.
On September 25, Brookings hosted a conversation on global food security, the prospects for ending global hunger, and the role that rice production and IRRI may be able to play today and in the future. Dr. Robert Zeigler, director general of IRRI, gave a brief presentation, after which Brookings Visiting Fellow John McArthur moderated a discussion.