Realignment Announced for UC Davis World Food Center and Affiliated Programs

The Office of the Chancellor and Provost has been conducting a series of program reviews to determine how to best engage faculty, students and staff in each and determine how to further enhance their overall effectiveness. One of the programs recently reviewed was the World Food Center and its affiliated programs.

“Here at UC Davis, our faculty are involved in cutting-edge research in diverse settings across the world,” Interim Chancellor Ralph J. Hexter said. “They are improving access to more sustainable and nutritious crops, and researching how to further enhance human and animal health. They are developing global partnerships and training students along the way. It is incredibly valuable work and improves the lives of people around the world. I’d like our faculty’s partnerships, innovations and expertise better reflected in the offerings of the World Food Center so that the value and benefit of the center continues to grow."

With these reflections in mind, Hexter announced several changes to the organizational structure of the World Food Center and its related programs. 

Effective Jan. 1, the College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences will assume programmatic oversight of the World Food Center. In assuming leadership for the center, Dean Helene Dillard will consult campus faculty, staff and others to discuss the future vision for the World Food Center and determine a long-term strategic framework for it. 

“I am thrilled to welcome the World Food Center to the College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences,” Dillard said. “Their co-location with the college will allow us to better collaborate with other schools and colleges across campus, foster a multidisciplinary focus, and showcase our faculty’s cutting-edge research on food, health and nutrition.”

Effective Dec. 1, other changes related to programs affiliated with the World Food Center included the transition of the UC Davis Blum Center for Developing Economies, led by Professor Lovell “Tu” Jarvis, and the UC Davis Chile Life Sciences Innovation Center, led by Professor Alan Bennett. Both programs will transition to the Office of Global Affairs. The Blum Center’s mission is to find tangible, sustainable solutions to alleviating poverty globally by engaging with students, faculty, researchers and local communities. The Chile Center focuses on the needs of the agricultural-food sector in Chile at the invitation of the Chilean government. Both centers will remain independently managed while working collaboratively with other programs housed within Global Affairs. 

Finally, the Innovation Institute for Food and Health will transition to the Office of Research ‪on Jan. 1. Led by Professor Justin Siegel, the Innovation Institute works with partners in academia, government and industry to enable safe, sustainable and secure nutrition for all. 

Faculty and staff in the affected programs have been notified of the planned realignments. Jan Hopmans will remain the interim director of the World Food Center through Dec. 31.

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Dana Topousis, News and Media Relations, UC Davis,

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