Food systems around the globe are vulnerable to the impacts of climate change, which are set to become more frequent and intense over the coming decades. Crop cultivation, livestock, fisheries and aquaculture, as well as related sectors such as forestry are heavily affected by changes in weather patterns, extreme weather events, and slow-onset processes such as sea level rise, soil degradation, and loss of ecosystem services.
Building on findings from previous events such as SLYCAN Trust’s 2020 Food Systems Summit and Virtual Summit on Just Transition, this Dialogue will explore several key questions. How can food systems be part of climate action and become more resilient while protecting livelihoods and social cohesion? What are the existing initiatives, mechanisms, policy processes, and opportunities for synergies regarding just transition? How can a just recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic be integrated with a just transition to more climate-friendly and equitable food systems? What examples and lessons can be replicated to address just transition in food systems at national and global level?
Climate change exacerbates existing social and economic vulnerabilities in food producers, communities, and supply and value chains. A just transition will be vital to enable more resilient development and help protect lives, livelihoods, businesses, public finances, and infrastructure. Just transition should be embedded into national and global policy frameworks related to climate change and sustainable development, including the Nationally Determined Contributions under the Paris Agreement, National Adaptation Plans, and the Sustainable Development Goals.
Katherine has considerable international experience working in private sector development, gender and women’s financial inclusion, including a strong focus on insurance. Most recently Katherine has provided gender expertise to the InsuResilience Global Partnership on gender and climate risk insurance coauthoring two publications on the theme: Applying a Gender Lens to Climate Risk Finance and Insurance, and Integrating Gender Considerations into Different Models of CRI. This builds on previous technical expertise as a long term gender and financial inclusion consultant for United Nations Capital Development Fund (UNCDF) where she led the development and guided the implementation of its regional gender strategies. This work included engaging with financial service providers and developing a self-assessment tool for financial service providers in Myanmar to enhance their institutional gender policies and practices. On behalf of UNCDF Katherine provided technical support to members of the Alliance for Financial Inclusion in the development of the Denarau Action Plan – the AFI Network Commitment to Gender and Women’s Financial Inclusion and in turn, the development of working group guidance notes on the themes of Sex-disaggregated Financial Inclusion data, Integrating Gender and Women’s Financial Inclusion into National Financial Inclusion Strategies, and Policy Responses to Anti-Money Laundering (AML)/ Countering the Financing of Terrorism (CFT). On behalf of GIZ in partnership with the International Finance Corporation (IFC) and Women’s World Banking and the Access to Insurance Initiative, Katherine has also co-authored the publication “Mainstreaming Gender and Targeting Women in Inclusive Insurance: Perspectives and Emerging Lessons A Compendium of Technical Notes and Case Studies”. Katherine began her career as a management trainee at the private international health care and insurance company BUPA. She has an MSc International Development (cum laude) from the University of Amsterdam and a BA (hons) Anthropology from the University of Durham.
Vositha Wijenayake works as the executive director of SLYCAN Trust. Vositha specializes in public international law with a focus on international environmental law, refugee law, and UN human rights law. She has over a decade of experience in working on climate change, at national and international level, and is a member of the National Expert Committee on Climate Change Adaptation of the Ministry of Environment of Sri Lanka. Vositha has been a delegate of the Sri Lankan government’s delegation to the UNFCCC negotiations since 2016, negotiating on issues related to compliance, climate change adaptation, loss and damage, gender. She is a consultant to the UNFCCC Secretariat, a member of the Expert Group on Oceans and Climate Change of the UNFCCC, and contributor to the NAP Technical Working Group under the UNFCCC. Vositha co-chairs the Impacts Working Group of the Insuresilience Global Partnership, and her most recent research includes work on national adaptation plans, the NDC review process in countries in Asia and Africa, gender responsiveness in climate policy processes, and climate induced migration and displacement.