Global nutrition report: Actions and accountability to accelerate the world's progress on nutrition

Global nutrition report: Actions and accountability to accelerate the world's progress on nutrition

Malnutrition affects one in two people on the planet. Of these, 165 million children under the age of five are estimated to be stunted (i.e. low height for age). Two billion people are estimated to be deficient in one or more micronutrients. Nearly 1.5 billion people are estimated to be overweight and over 500 million to be obese. These conditions all have severe consequences for survival, for morbidity, and for the ability of individuals, the economy and society to thrive. In relation to the scale that these problems imply, the allocation of public resources to their prevention and amelioration is minuscule. Resources to specific nutrition programmes amount to a small fraction of one per cent of domestic or aid budgets.

The Global Nutrition Report convenes existing processes, highlights progress in combating malnutrition and identifies gaps and proposes ways to fill them. Through this, the Report helps to guide action, build accountability and spark increased commitment for further progress towards reducing malnutrition much faster.

At its core, the Report aims to empower nutrition champions at the national level to better inform policy decisions and to strengthen the case for increased resources. A repository of global and country-level nutrition data and analysis, the Report also provides civil society organisations (CSOs), donors, governments, the business sector, researchers, the media and engaged citizens with evidence of the current scale of malnutrition, the measures being taken to combat it, as well as highlighting what more needs to be done.

The 2014 Report is funded through the support of the UK Department for International Development (DFID), the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the Government of Canada, the Children’s Investment Fund Foundation, the European Commission, Irish Aid, 1,000 Days and the CGIAR Research Program on Agriculture for Nutrition & Health.

Key points from the Report:

  • People with good nutrition are key to sustainable development.
  • We need to commit to improving nutrition faster and build this goal into the Sustainable Development Goal targets for 2030.
  • The world is currently not on course to meet the global nutrition targets set by the World Health Assembly, but many countries are making good progress in the target indicators.
  • Dealing with different, overlapping forms of malnutrition is the “new normal.”
  • We need to extend coverage of nutrition-specific programs to more of the people who need them.
  • A greater share of investments to improve the underlying determinants of nutrition should be designed to have a larger impact on nutritional outcomes.
  • More must be done to hold donors, countries, and agencies accountable for meeting their commitments to improve nutrition.
  • Tracking spending on nutrition is currently challenging, making it difficult to hold responsible parties accountable.
  • Nutrition needs a data revolution.
  • National nutrition champions need to be recognized, supported, and expanded in number.