NMBU Sustainability arena: Sustainable food systems

The arena for sustainable food systems is an arena for interdisciplinary research, education and communication towards sustainable food systems. The arena will be an internal as well as an external meeting point for critical reflection about efforts to make our current food systems more sustainable.  

About the arena

Today's world food systems are centralized around many environmental, economic, and societal challenges. Crises such as the pandemic and the war in Ukraine exacerbates the challenges we face. This reveals a need for a more resilient system to feed a growing world population.  

The UN elevated Sustainable Food Systems to the top of the international agenda during the Food System Summit in New York in 2021. In Norway, actors in the national food systems are increasingly judged by their ability to contribute to food security as well as to human and planetary health.  

There is now a broad international consensus that the world's food systems, both local and global, need to go through a “transformation” to meet the UN sustainable development goals, to be able to tackle the current challenges.  

The arena involves all NMBU's seven faculties, as well as various partners from different sectors within research, education and communication. 


Through the production and communication of knowledge, the arena will build a common and transdisciplinary understanding of sustainability in food systems. The arena will work to stimulate transformative change and critical reflection of the current state of the world's food systems.  

The arena will support innovation in food systems thinking across scales from the micro-level (e.g. co-evolution of microbes, animals and food-plants) to the macro-level (e.g. international food trade). Central to the work within the arena will be the overall system approach, including a multitude of knowledge producers to cover the whole food system.  

Working between different sectors and across different levels both internally and externally of the university, the arena will work within research, education, and communication to reach these goals.  

Everything encompassing all actors, food products, as well as economic, societal, and natural environments in which the systems are placed.  

A sustainable food system: «…a food system that delivers food security and nutrition for all in such a way that the economic, social and environmental bases to generate food security and nutrition for future generations are not compromised». 


In the arena we will, through different activities, strengthen the ability to deliver knowledge about sustainable food systems, such as organizing seminars, workshops and writing activities.  

The arena will:  

  • Work towards establishing a MSc program in Sustainable Food Systems.  
  • Collaborate across faculties on teaching and student activities in food system related courses. 
  • Provide seed funding for writing workshops aimed at co-publishing across projects/faculties and writing of new grant proposals  
  • Organize Sustainable Food System outreach seminars and debates, both digitally and physically.  
Contact us / Subscribe to our mailing list

If you have any inquiries about the arena, please contact our project coordinator Caroline Karlsson by e-mail: caroline.marie.krisitina.karlsson@nmbu.no 

Subscribe to our mailing list here 


Ola Westengen
Ola Westengen
Hanne Fjerdingby Olsen
Hanne Fjerdingby Olsen
Faculty Who 
BIOVIT Angela Schwarm 
BIOVIT Anne Kjersti Uhlen 
BIOVIT Åshild Ergon 
BIOVIT Bente Aspeholen Åby 
BIOVIT Gareth Frank Difford 
BIOVIT Geir Lieblein 
BIOVIT Gunnar Klemetsdal 
BIOVIT Hanne Fjerdingby Olsen 
BIOVIT Margareth Øverland 
BIOVIT Morten Lillemo 
BIOVIT Odd-Arne Rognli 
BIOVIT Phil Pope 
BIOVIT Inger-Lise Andersen 
BIOVIT Marko Opecec 
HH Arild Angelsen 
HH Stein Terje Holden 
KBM Live Heldal Hagen 
KBM Åsa Helena Frostegård 
LANDSAM Aida Cuni Sanchez 
LANDSAM Ola Westengen 
LANDSAM Ruth Haug 
LANDSAM Sarah Paule Dalle 
MINA Anders Qvale Nyrud 
MINA Peter Dörsch 
REALTEK Achim Kohler 
REALTEK Boris Zimmermann 
REALTEK John Morken 
REALTEK Valeria Tafintseva 
REALTEK Volha Shapaval 
VET Jannicke Nordgreen 
VET Marina Elisabeth Aspholm  
VET Mette Helen Bjørge Müller 


The sustainability arena started


Opening seminar: Arena for Sustainable Food Systems - with Dr. John Ingram


NMBU Sustainability Arenas

NMBU Sustainability Arenas for Outstanding Research, Education and Innovation

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