Food Smart City


The 12-month project Universities West Midlands (UWM) collaboration establishing the ‘Food-Smart City’ concept commenced in July 2013, jointly funded by the Higher Education Funding Council for England and Universities West Midlands member institutions.

The aim of the project was to establish a collaboration between the universities in the West Midlands that would lead to the creation of a long-term partnership that will provide, through education, research and knowledge transfer, the expertise to establish the Food-Smart City concept as an achievable proposition.

Though restricted by the short timescales, the project delivered a number of valuable substantive outputs that have laid the foundation for future education, research and knowledge exchange in this area:

  • Establishment of a collaborative relationship between nine West Midlands universities through the Project Advisory Group and Project Steering Groups, both of whom met three times over the project period.
  • A mapping of relevant expertise, research and course provision among the UWM institutions for signposting services.
  • Production of a report on mapping the food system in the West Midlands.
  • Organisation of public and business seminars on the subject of Food Smart Cities (FSC) focused on the West Midlands.
  • Development of a collaborative research proposal (value: £440,000).
  • Presentation of the project at regional, national and international events and liaison with organisations in the West Midlands to signpost expertise and opportunities.
  • Development and piloting of the cross-University online short course ‘Food and the City’ as a precursor to a potential shared module, attracting 350 registrations, 60 of which fully completed the course. 

Read the final report here.

Project website.