I just spent 10 years dealing with some of the worst food shocks in world history. It began when El Niño obliterated crops in Australia and India, and drought struck North America. America’s farm belt was hit by floods just a couple of years later. I watched with dismay as food stocks fell and prices skyrocketed. Countries eased environmental laws to help farmers maximize yields, yet food security still dipped across Africa, Europe and Asia. Some nations crumbled under the weight of civil unrest and hunger.
Then things got really bad.
Fortunately, all of this actually happened over the course of two days this November. It was a game.
More precisely, it was a simulation called Food Chain Reaction. Together, WWF, the Center for American Progress, CNA Corporation, Cargill and Mars produced the event to see how real people from around the world – policymakers, business executives, scientists and researchers with deep experience working on food and agriculture issues – would respond to a decade-long series of agricultural, economic, and political events. Sixty-five experts across eight teams gathered in WWF’s US headquarters, to play the role of nation states, multilateral institutions, and businesses. Like wizards behind the curtain, an independent set of experts determined how the rest of the world would react to the players’ moves…
Read the complete post on the World Economic Forum site at https://agenda.weforum.org/2015/12/what-gaming-can-teach-about-us-about-food-security/.
Top image: © WWF / Simon Rawles