Overcoming the Limits of Evidence on Effective Multisectoral Nutrition Policy

Authors: Madhu Kumar Marasini; Ssansa Mugenyi Journal: Food and Nutrition Bulletin

The multisectoral approach has evolved as a popular instrument to attain nutrition goals and targets. But as policy makers, we need timely, relevant, and accurate information in order to effectively support these plans. This commentary comes from the members of the nutrition secretariats at the National Planning Commission in Nepal and the Office of the Prime Minister in Uganda on availability and use of evidence and the nutrition policy cycle. As has been highlighted in this supplement, some of the challenges we have faced include tracking nutrition spending and limited human resource capacity. It will be important for countries, including our own, to take steps to ensure that all sectors with responsibility for nutrition issues adequately prioritize nutrition—as evidenced by budgets and targets—and coordinate efforts for the most efficient use of funds. Countries will also need to consider the importance of transparency and accountability at all levels, as well as planning and reporting systems to ensure better cooperation and stronger partnerships. Going forward, we call on all those working in the field of nutrition to focus on developing evidence that is useful for decision-making and that can facilitate monitoring of practical measures of governance and financing by national- and district-level stakeholders.