Get involved: let’s find a way to feed 9 billion people in 2050
What are the biggest environmental issues we face? Pollution? Climate change? True. But among these environmental topics, feeding the growing population, 9 billion in 2050, is one of the most pressing issues we have to find a solution for.
To solve this problem, we need people to gain knowledge, do research, and explore the options. You can be a piece of the puzzle, help find a solution, and start now by gaining knowledge about food production systems, food security, sustainable development in agriculture and livestock, and systems thinking.
XSeries sustainable food security
How is it possible that the world currently produces enough food for everyone, but still people suffer from hunger and nutrient deficiencies? How can we produce sufficient food in an environmentally sustainable way to feed the increased world population in the future?
This Environmental Studies XSeries, developed by Wageningen University, consists of 3 courses:
The value of systems thinking
Learn about systems thinking and its application to improve the environmental sustainability of food production systems. The main topics are:
Complexity and diversity of food production systems
Principles of system analysis
Evaluation methods for the environmental impact of food production systems
Strong and weak points of different food production systems
Learn the basics of crop production to feed the world and preserve our planet’s resources. The main topics are:
Basic concept of plant production
Issues related to global food production and consumption
Influences of water (scarcity and availability) and other measures on crop production
Processes that cause major problems for the environment
Measures to solve and prevent those problems
Learn about the basics of food access decision-making from a multilevel perspective. The main topics are:
The basic principles of food access
Choices influencing food access
Dilemmas at household, local, national and international levels
About Wageningen University & Research
At Wageningen University and Research, we are dedicated to exploring the potential of nature to improve the quality of life. Studies and courses train (future) professionals from all over the world in sustainable food systems and help consumers make informed choices about what they eat, how it is produced and the impact of their decisions on the environment and society.
Course structures and certificates
The duration of each course (or MOOC: Massive Open Online Course) is flexible: study any time and place you want. You decide how to spend your time during a course. Gain the knowledge offered in each course free of charge through dynamic modules filled with video, syllabus, and assignments for practice and grading. Obtain your verified certificate for $ 49,- each. After successful completion of all 3 courses, you can obtain an overall certificate.
About course dates
EdX keeps courses available, even if the recent course date has expired. Enroll nonetheless, and allow yourself to explore content and continue learning. However, not all features and materials may be available. Check back often to see when new start dates are announced.
Scroll down to find more information about each separate course and join the Wageningen University XSeries about sustainable food security.
Courses under this program: Course 1: Sustainable Food Security: Crop Production
How to feed the world without depleting our planet’s reserves? Learn the basics of crop production. This free online course is offered as a MOOC, and is part of the XSeries Sustainable Food Security.
Course 2: Sustainable Food Security: The value of systems thinking
Learn how to solve the 'Rubik's cube' of systems thinking and how it's applied to improve the environmental sustainability of food production systems!
Course 3: Sustainable Food Security: Food Access
Who decides what food is on your plate? Understand the basics of access to food and food decision-making from a multilevel perspective in this course. This free online course is offered as a MOOC, and is part of the XSeries Sustainable Food Security.
Systems thinking and environmental sustainability: solve the Rubik 's cube
Have you ever considered how many aspects of food production affect the natural environment? Every aspect needs to be considered in attaining the future goal to produce enough food for the growing population while at the same time preserving our planet. It's as difficult as solving a Rubik's cube; changing one aspect may affect the environment in a major way.
Systems theory, or systems thinking, is a way of understanding and working with the complexity of sustainable food production systems, which requires training in different disciplines and an approach that can address this complexity. This environmental studies course enables participants to apply the principles of a systems approach to food production with a focus on environmental sustainability.
The University of Wageningen offers an excellent combination of conducting research worldwide and educating in the area of 'healthy food and living environment'. For each course, professors from specific fields of expertise are eager to teach and share the University's mission: "Explore the potential of nature to improve the quality of life".
This is why you should sign up
Sign up as a student if you want to acquire knowledge about environmental sustainability and the way systems thinking helps in decision-making in the complexity of food production. After successful completion of both practice and graded assignments related to this course, you will:
Understand the complexity and diversity of food production systems
Understand the principles of system analysis and apply it to environmental issues in food production
Understand evaluation methods for the environmental impact of food production systems in different contexts and levels (e.g. farm, regional and global) Be able to evaluate strong and weak points of different food production systems regarding environmental sustainability
Be able to contribute to a discussion about environmental sustainability and food production and ask relevant questions
Food access: Learn about food supply and food security
Have you ever considered that you’re not the only one who decides what food ends up on your plate? In this environmental studies course, you’ll explore how key actors at household, local, national and international levels negotiate and make choices on access to food. You will understand why the choices you make have been predestined. And you will learn what it takes to provide access to a safe and nutritious food supply every day.
This introductory course is taught by instructors with decades of experience in university teaching and real life projects about access to food all over the world. This course will be beneficial to students, food and nutrition policy makers, development practitioners and trainers at international, national, household and individual level.
Wageningen University is specialized
The University of Wageningen offers an excellent combination of conducting research worldwide and educating in the area of ‘healthy food and living environment’. The institute ranks among the top Dutch universities and has scored the third place in the Times Higher Education (THE) World Ranking 2017 for research performance. Learn from professors who have gained decades of experience from both teaching at a specialized university and real life projects about access to food worldwide.
Eddie Bokkers, Martin van Ittersum, Ken Giller, Harrie Lovenstein, Gerrie van de Ven, Marrit van den Berg, Hilde Bras, Jeroen Candel, Jessica Duncan, Ewout Frankema, Peter Oosterveer, Maja Slingerland, Sietze Vellema, I.J.M. de Boer and Carolien Kroeze
Start your review of Food Security and Sustainability
Ragib Das Gupta
Ragib Das Gupta is taking this course right now, spending 1 hours a week on it and found the course difficulty to be easy.
Food Security and sustainability is the common understanding way to established to increase economy in world. In this reason we are ensure sustainability to all level and encouraging specially industrial and agricultural aspect.