Expert Panel 1

Building Forward Better – for ONE Climate-Resilient and Healthy WORLD without Hunger.


German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), World Bank, Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research – CGIAR

Time: Monday, 18. January 2021, 1:00 p.m. – 2:00 p.m. (CET), subsequent deep dive 2:00 p.m. – 2:30 p.m.

Languages: English, German

The subject of the panel was how to ensure food security for the world’s population in the future, manage climate change and become more resilient to global pandemics.
State Secretary Dr. Flachsbarth introduced the topic from a political perspective and Martien van Nieuwkoop gave insights into how the pandemic has influenced the work of the World Bank.The four experts introduced themselves in their private environment with personal statements.
In the subsequent live panel (including questions from the audience), the four guests discussed concrete measures to make food systems more resilient to the effects of climate change, to strengthen the resilience of food systems in times of a global pandemic, the contribution of the agricultural sector to the One Health approach, and to prevent further pandemics.

As a conclusion, moderator Carin Smaller pointed out that these global issues cannot be considered separately. It is important to recognise ttheir complexity and address them with a holistic approach.


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Introductory statement

Parliamentary State Secretary to the Federal Minister for Economic Cooperation and Development, BMZ, Berlin

Maria Flachsbarth, a doctor of veterinary medicine from University of Veterinary Medicine Hanover, became a member of the German Parliament in 2002. Since 2006, she has been deputy chair of the CDU in the state of Lower Saxony, and since 2007, she has chaired the CDU district association for Hanover. From 2002 to 2013, she served on the Parliamentary Committee on the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety. From 2009 to 2013, she chaired a Parliamentary Committee of Inquiry on the envisaged radioactive waste disposal facility at Gorleben, and she was the special representative for churches and religious communities of the CDU/CSU parliamentary group. Then from the end of 2013 to March 2018, she served as Parliamentary State Secretary to the Federal Minister of Food and Agriculture. Since March 2018, she is Parliamentary State Secretary to the Federal Minister for Economic Cooperation and Development.

Panel guests

As Global Director, Martien provides leadership to the formulation and implementation of the Bank’s strategy and knowledge in agriculture and food, oversees the operationalization of this vision in regional and country programs, and acts as senior spokesperson for agriculture and food Bank-wide and globally. Prior to this position, he has held numerous managerial positions covering the Bank’s engagement on agriculture in Africa, Latin-America and South Asia.  Martien is a Dutch national who holds post-graduate degrees in Agricultural Economics from Wageningen University and in Business Administration from Georgetown University.

Delia Grace is an epidemiologist and veterinarian with more than 20 years’ experience in developing countries. She graduated from several leading universities and currently is a professor at the university of Greenwich and supports research on human and animal health at the International Livestock Research Institute based in Nairobi, Kenya leading work on food safety in the new One Health Centre established in 2020. Her career has spanned the private sector, field-level community development and aid management, as well as research.  She has lived and worked in Asia, west and east Africa and authored or co-authored more than 200 peer-reviewed publications as well as training courses, briefs, films, articles, chapters and blog posts.

Her research program focuses on the design and promotion of risk-based approaches to food safety in livestock products in sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia.  She is also a key player on ILRI’s Ecohealth/ One health approach to the control of zoonotic emerging infectious diseases and agriculture-associated antimicrobial resistance.

Dr Bruce Campbell is Director of the CGIAR Research Programme on Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security (CCAFS) (, a staff member of International Centre for Tropical Agriculture (CIAT) and Senior Advisor to the Global Centre on Adaptation (GCA). He works on adaptation to increased climatic variability and progressive climate change, and on low emissions development. CCAFS started in 2010 and has a budget of c. USD 50-60 million per annum; and operates with staff in more than 20 countries. He was previously based in Zimbabwe, Indonesia and Australia. He has published over 150 journal articles and more than a dozen books.

Website link –

Twitter – @bcampbell_CGIAR

Professor Lindiwe Majele Sibanda is Director and Chair of the African Research Universities Alliance Centre of Excellence in Sustainable Food Systems (ARUA-SFS). Her most recent assignments include Vice President, Country Support, Policy and Partnerships for the Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA), and Head of Mission of the pan-African Food, Agriculture and Natural Resources Policy Analysis Network (FANRPAN). Lindiwe holds a PhD and MSC in Animal Sciences from the University of Reading, UK and a BSc in Animal Sciences from the University of Alexandria, Egypt.

Sophie is a youth activist who promotes Food Security and Gender Equality. She is a Lead Group Member of the Scaling Up Nutrition Movement (SUN) and serves on the Board of the leading international charity ActionAid UK.
She is a co-founder of “Agrikua”, an online platform which aims to promote women and decrease the gender gap in agriculture in developing countries with 8 young people from across the globe. She is a regular speaker and panelist at international conferences and events.
Sophie is one of the 10 women leaders featured in the Disney book ‘Choose to Matter’ by ESPN presenter Julie Foudy which encourages young women to find the leader within. In 2014 She was named by TIME magazine as one of the most influential teens.
Sophie studies International Development and Food Policy at University College Cork.

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