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Food-Smart City Concept


Universities West Midlands is working together with its constituent member universities to develop and promote the concept of a Food-Smart City.


The guiding definition of a Food-Smart City is:

"a city or metropolitan area that harnesses its potential to maximise the social, economic and environmental benefits of its food system whilst also supporting its rural hinterland and contributing towards global food security and sustainability."

The project is attempting to refine and develop this vision into a comprehensive and operational conceptual framework that promotes the role of universities and other forms of regional expertise through interaction with businesses, policymakers and communities.

This is being achieved by applying the concept to the West Midlands of England and developing collaborative activities between the universities and the region. There are three phases to the project: Mapping, Concept Development & Collaboration.

N.B. Universities West Midlands is a not-for-profit membership organisation working in support of the twelve Universities in the West Midlands including the University of Warwick. It fosters collaborative solutions and strong partnerships in support of economic, social and cultural well being.


The group are developing a free online course exploring the concept of the Food-Smart City. The course is suitable for anyone who is interested in understanding the challenges of feeding people living in urban areas.

The course will run for six weeks from June 2nd 2014.

Topics covered will include:

  • People, food and the city
  • Growing food in urban spaces
  • Food Cultures and gastronomy
  • Environmental Challenges
  • Planning for Food-Smart Cities
  • Emerging Technologies
  • New Business Models

For more details please go to: