The power of multi-sectoral governance to address malnutrition

The power of multi-sectoral governance to address malnutrition

Improved nutrition is critical to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals. Chronic malnutrition, including stunting, is an important example of a global challenge that spans multiple sectors, including health, agriculture and food systems, water and sanitation, education and gender. Addressing malnutrition requires a strong focus on governance, involving coordinated actions by many actors across sectors and across levels of government.

Recognising the multifaceted nature of malnutrition, SNV in partnership with the Centre for Development Innovation of Wageningen UR (CDI) and the Royal Tropical Institute (KIT), and funded by the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC) developed and implemented the Sustainable Nutrition for All (SN4A) project in Zambia and Uganda.

A central pillar of the SN4A project is to support national, multi-sectoral policies by developing and strengthening district and sub-district multi-sectoral nutrition coordination committees (NCCs). Experiences and learnings from this process are presented in the technical brief, “The power of multi-sectoral governance in addressing malnutrition - Insights gained from Sustainable Nutrition for All in Uganda and Zambia”. Few studies have evaluated governance at the sub-national level and its importance for project outcomes.

In the first of a series of papers, SNV, SDC, KIT and CDI, draw on the experiences and learnings from the Sustainable Nutrition for All project in Uganda and Zambia.  From the review, we formulate a set of recommendations for improved inter-sectoral and multi-sectoral governance and implementation. The paper highlights the need to build capacity at all levels. No single government, organisation, or intervention can alone end malnutrition, and it is only through working together on all fronts at all governance levels can the 2030 agenda be achieved.

The technical brief is published in two forms, the full length brief and a short summary with the policy recommendations.