Supporting Policies, Programs and Enabling Action through Research (SPEAR)

Agriculture for Nutrition and Health (A4NH), led by the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI), is a CGIAR research program that seeks to strengthen the contribution of agricultural development to improved nutrition and health of people. Now in its second phase, A4NH’s focus has expanded to address challenges related to food system transformation, the rising burden of foodborne disease, and emerging health risks, including obesity and antimicrobial resistance, through 5 research flagships.

The Supporting Policies, Programs, and Enabling Action through Research (SPEAR) flagship is working with a range of partners, governments, civil society, and regional and global organizations to develop multisectoral solutions to the challenge of malnutrition. By bringing agriculture, nutrition and health stakeholders together, SPEAR will help stimulate an enabling environment for partnerships and joint program and policy-making. SPEAR is led by the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI) and works with a number of strategic partners.

The main objective of SPEAR is to contribute to better nutrition outcomes for nutritionally-vulnerable populations, working through 3 clusters to:

1). Understand, document, and enhance the impact of nutrition-sensitive agricultural programs on dietary quality and health- and nutrition-related outcomes in children, adolescent girls, and women of reproductive age;

2). Understand and document the barriers and opportunities, and test approaches for strengthening enabling environments for agri-food systems to support nutrition and health goals; and

3). Strengthen capacity and leadership to promote evidence-informed decision making along the policy, program development, and implementation continuum in South/Southeast Asia and Africa.

SPEAR is increasingly focused on malnutrition, not just undernutrition, as it is vital to take on board the growing crisis of overweight and obesity in our research.

SPEAR is a collaboration – we work directly with governments to help them support and implement their own policies and programs and to shine a light on the value of knowledge and evidence in improving those policies and programs.


To engage with A4NH directly on Supporting Policies, Programs, and Enabling Action through Research, please contact the flagship leader:

Stuart Gillespie Senior Research Fellow Poverty, Health, and Nutrition Division (PHND)-IFPRI

Email: [email protected]

Project details

start date
2 January 2017
end date
1 January 2023


Recent work