The SDG 2 Evaluation was conceived as a ‘formative’ evaluation in that it tries to assess a programme of work that is still taking shape. It was a complex exercise, strongly affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.
The evaluation suggests that FAO is well positioned at the global level and is committed to support the SDGs, a framework that it helped design. The new FAO’s Strategic Framework provides an opportunity to promote and communicate FAO’s role in a coherent and joined-up manner, aligned with the 2030 Agenda. FAO has engaged with the current UN reform – strongly connected to the SDGs – with a very collaborative attitude. At the national level, FAO’s position is weaker, due to a limited programmatic footprint. Nevertheless, a number of FAO initiatives already acting at scale in support of its Members achievement of SDG 2 are highlighted in the report, as when it supports national and regional programmes, legal and policy initiatives, investment in food systems, climate finance, UN collaboration, and national education and extension systems. Greater efforts are needed to translate the principle “to leave no one behind” into action, although progress was recorded on gender equality, and to transform FAO into a modern learning organization, more pragmatic and operational, and better able to support its Members in the transition to sustainable development.