The U.S. and Sweden Launch Grand Challenge for Development to Secure Water for Food

The program to fund and accelerate scientific and technological innovations to manage water in developing and emerging countries.

On September 3, 2013, the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) and Sweden’s development agency (Sida) announced a new program, Securing Water for Food: A Grand Challenge for Development.

Through this $25 million program, USAID and Sida will fund and accelerate scientific and technological innovations that can be sustained with market-based approaches to more effectively use and manage the water required to produce food in developing and emerging countries.

Funding will be provided to science and technology innovators, entrepreneurs, businesses, and academics to accelerate the best solutions in three key areas that impact food production: water reuse and efficiency, water capture and storage, and salinity. Support will also be provided to facilitate the adoption of these solutions in new and emerging markets.

Water scarcity is one of the most pressing global challenges. Approximately 2.8 billion people—more than 40% of the world’s populations—are affected by water scarcity. As more than 70% of the world’s water is used in agriculture, global food security is particularly hampered by the lack of available water.

“By harnessing the expertise and creativity of the world's brightest innovators, we can tackle this critical challenge with new thinking and partnerships,” said Dr. Rajiv Shah, USAID administrator. “Securing Water for Food represents exactly the kind of effort we hope to inspire through USAID's new and first-ever global water and development strategy that we launched this past May.”

“In a finite biosphere, solutions to pressing water challenges require new thinking and innovative financing”, said Gunilla Carlsson, Swedish Minister for Development Cooperation. “I am excited about the possibilities of this new initiative made possible through the close cooperation between Sweden and USAID.”

To date, USAID and Sida have pooled over $100 million with other partners to fund three Grand Challenges for Development, demonstrating our mutual commitment to science, technology, innovation, and entrepreneurship. Learn more about the Grand Challenges for Development program at www.usaid.gov/grandchallenges.

Download Center

  • Monitoring and Reporting on Air Emissions for Regulators and the Real World

    When it comes to managing compliance and regulatory issues surrounding air emissions, there are no easy jobs. With interviews from practitioners from American Electric Power, Red Cedar Gathering, Trinity Consultants, and Cority, this eBook provides practical advice to advance your air emissions monitoring and reporting programs.

  • What Every EHS Professional Should Know About ESG

    Join experts from Arcadis and Cority on April 27th to learn the most common ESG reporting frameworks and how technology can help you improve reporting efficiency, identify areas for improvement, and create defensible audit trails.

  • Green Quadrant EHS Software 2021

    Read the new report by independent analyst firm, Verdantix, to get an unbiased comparison of the 22 most prominent EHS software vendors in the industry.

  • RFP Template for Waste Management Software

    Learn the essential questions to ask when evaluating waste management software solutions with this free, ready-to-use RFP template

  • 5 Keys to Best-in-Class Chemical Management

    Running a safe chemical program is challenging and complex: from knowing what's on-site to proper handling and disposal - all while navigating regulatory changes. Learn the best ways to mitigate chemical risk, get the most value out of your data, and gain buy-in for a chemical management solution.

Featured Webinar