GFAR Governance and Management

The Global Forum on Agricultural Research (GFAR) plays a critical role in transforming agri-food research and innovation systems. Its focus and its priorities are clear – as set out in the GCARD Road Map and agreed by the GFAR Constituent Assembly in August 2015.

To effectively fulfil its role as a catalyst for change the Forum needs strong and robust governance and management. At the GFAR Constituent Assembly in August 2015, a new governance structure was agreed that includes a GFAR Partner Assembly and a multi-stakeholder Steering Committee.

Steering Committee

A multi-stakeholder Steering Committee will meet every year between meetings of the GFAR Partners' Assembly. At the first Partners' Assembly held in April 2016, the basis of the Steering Committee's membership was fundamentally revised to make it truly and legitimately inclusive of all perspectives on the role of agri-food research and innovation in sustainable development and in meeting our future needs.

Through an open and inclusive process, nine local representative seats have each been voted on and determined by their own constituencies. This process ensured that they are truly credible in representing the interests of the communities they serve, and are able to reflect a grassroots viewpoint, informed by local perspectives and distinct from that of the composite global body concerned. 

The Steering Committee will organize itself as a body and through standing committees.  The reformed Steering Committee will decide what sub-committees it may, or may not, require to ensure effective operation and accountability in all respects.

In February 2017, the new GFAR Steering Committee will meet in Rome. A list of the representatives forming the new Steering Committee is available here

Partners' Assembly

The GFAR Partners' Assembly will be held every three years as part of the Global Conference on Agricultural Research for Development (GCARD). The Partners' Assembly is composed of global partners, regional fora partners and partners nominated by regional constituencies. All partners are accountable to their constituencies.

Constituencies of partners coming from the regional and global organizations identify themselves as partners in the Global Forum by expressing formally their alignment with the Global Forum's Mission and Vision.

The roles of the Partners' Assembly are to contribute to strategy development in agri-food research and innovation; to reflect diverse stakeholder perspectives; to relate to other sector fora and institutions; to track developments; to provide oversight of the Global Forum's strategic framework, plan of action, role and direction; and to bring collective advocacy and common commitment for GFAR actions.

The Partners' Assembly is intended to reflect a range of perspectives from those stakeholders with an interest in, and connection with, agri-food knowledge and its use in innovation, reasearch, enterprise and development.

The first Partners' Assembly met at GCARD3 in April 2016. Read the Report of Proceedings here


The Global Forum's Secretariat provides support to the Partner Assembly, the Steering Committee and to all stakeholders as they work together to undertake collective actions through the Forum's programs. Located within the FAO Headquarters in Rome, it is a small, tightly-focussed team comprising the Executive Secretary, assisted by senior officers, administrative staff and volunteers.

The Secretariat supports the development of a strategic agenda for agri-food research and innovation, encouraging dialogue among all relevant stakeholders on topics of common interest. It stimulates the development of action networks and partnerships among stakeholders and supports the strengthening of institutions and organizations to better link research to development. The Secretariat helps convene the different types of meetings held by GFAR, including GCARD. The Secretariat also helps to formulate the Medium Term Plan and supports its implementation through its annual Program of Work.

See the current staff of the Secretariat here.

Make the Change – join the Global Forum on Agricultural Research and Innovation!

GFAR is an open forum and a movement for change.

Together, we are working to make research and innovation in agriculture and food more effective, responsive and equitable, towards achieving Sustainable Development.

The Global Forum is open to all local, national, regional and global organizations who share in our purpose. We come together from around the world, each with our own perspectives and capabilities. There is no financial obligation or legal commitment involved.

Being a Partner in the Global Forum will enable your institution to:

  • Share your work, interests and visions with a world-wide community and join others in addressing what concerns you
  • Shape and engage in collective actions for change, through the processes and governance of the Global Forum
  • Influence agenda globally, on research and innovation in agriculture, food and rural development

Simply enter your contact details HERE to become a Partner

Global Forum on Agricultural Research (GFAR)