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The UOC and the FAO unite to offer online programs on food security

Integration of the FAO's Food Security Information for Decision Making Distance Learning programs into the UOC's Department of Food Systems, Culture and Society

The UOC to offer online programs on food security
PRLog - Sep. 30, 2010 - Today, Imma Tubella, President of the Open University of Catalonia (Universitat Oberta de Catalunya, UOC), and Hafez Ghanem, Assistant Director-General, Economic and Social Development Department, FAO, signed an agreement to integrate the FAO's Food Security Information for Decision Making Distance Learning programs into the UOC's Department of Food Systems, Culture and Society.

How do we feed a growing population safely and how do we address the growing problems of malnutrition, poverty and hunger that currently affect over 1 billion people worldwide? Addressing these issues in a pragmatic and interactive way is the aim of the programmes that the UOC, based in Barcelona, and the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), based in Rome, have agreed to offer jointly through the UOC Global Campus.

The agreement, which has been signed today in Rome, formalizes an already year-old collaboration on the development and launch of a new Food Security: Assessment and Action Certificate.

This partnership was crystallized in March 2010 with the launch of the certificate offered through the UOC Department of Food Systems, Culture and Society. The Certificate can be taken as a stand-alone certificate or applied to the Master’s degree in Food, Society and International Agri-Food Governance

The certificate is an extension of FAO’s Food Security for Decision Making Distance Learning Program that was developed with funding from the European Union. This high-quality content has been integrated into the UOC Global Campus.

The courses that make up the specialization are taught by an international team of experts with extensive experience in the field of food security. The aim of the certificate is to provide students with not only a holistic understanding of food security, but also the knowledge to undertake, assess and analyze food security projects in their communities.

The Joint FAO-UOC Certificate in Food Security: Assessment and Action was launched in March 2010 with 49 students from 26 countries including Sudan, Ethiopia, the United States and the Netherlands. Students who successfully complete the course in July 2010 will be awarded a certificate and 15 European Credit Transfer System (ECTS) credits.

The FAO centres its attention on international activities aimed at eradicating hunger by helping developing countries to modernize and improve their agricultural, forestry and fishing practices with the aim of ensuring good nutrition for all. It pays special attention to rural areas, where 70% of the world’s poor population lives.

The collaboration between the UOC and the FAO is based on a shared vision: while one of the missions of the FAO is to help developing countries strengthen professional development thereby contributing to their economic and social sustainability, the UOC aims to promote access to knowledge through the application of information and communication technologies and so, like the FAO, contribute to individual and social progress.

Food Systems, Culture and Society Online Courses at UOC - http://www.uoc.edu/portal/english/estudis/index.html

The Open University of Cataloniahttp://www.UOC.edu

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The UOC began more than 15 years ago as an e-learning institution and solely as an e-learning institution. As a result, our teaching and learning model is flexible and innovative. Located in Barcelona, Spain physically and virtually around the globe, the UOC is an online university that has been winning international awards on e-learning since 1997.

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