Warwick in London took part in an international conference in Rome hosted by the UN’s International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) at the end of January.
Warwick in London is a small project team from the University, based in Warwick’s London offices in the cities ‘Knowledge Quarter’ between St Pancras and King’s Cross stations. They participated as a ‘key partner’ in conjunction with American research group the Brookings Institution.
The conference, entitled ‘Investing in inclusive rural transformation: innovative approaches to financing’, was held at the Italian Ministry of Economy and Finance as well as IFAD’s headquarters in Rome from 25 to 27 January.
Siobhan Benita, Chief Strategy Officer for Warwick in London and Co-director of the Warwick Policy Lab, hosted centre stage on the final day of the event which included an interview with Indian Economist Dr Montek Singh Ahluwalia.
Professor Rocco Machiavelli, a Research Associate at Warwick Policy Lab and Professor at the London School of Economics, also participated in a panel discussion during the conference.
Other speakers at the event included the Italian Minister of Economy and Finances Pier Carlo Padoan and Eric Maskin, a Nobel Laureate and the Adams University Professor at Harvard.
The conference culminated in the announcement of the creation of the Smallholder Agriculture Finance and Investment Network (SAFIN) by IFAD President Kayano F. Nwanze.
The network is intended to close a financial gap that prevents small producers and businesses in rural areas of developing countries from growing their operations, which is estimated to currently stand at US$150 billion.
Warwick’s participation in the conference came as part of a wider partnership between the Warwick Policy Lab and IFAD, with it stated that the relationship: “creates opportunities for research student placements, and closer working between international development academics and practitioners.”