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We share key insights at mNutrition Workshop in London

Due to a dearth of information on adequate nutrition, over 30% of people in the developing world suffer from micronutrient deficiency, a major cause of illness, reduced productivity, poor growth and impaired cognitive development (CABI). Considering the pervasive impact of information technology in all areas of human development, one pertinent question is whether digital platforms can aid in tackling the challenge of micronutrient deficiency.

Funded by the UK Aid and coordinated by GSMA, mNutrition initiative aims to develop and scale-up the delivery of nutrition messages through agriculture and health mobile phone platforms. Launched in 2013, the multi-country initiative aims to improve the health of at least 3 million people. As part of the content development phase of the initiative, GAIN hosted a workshop on how the use of mobile platforms can spark and accelerate actions to advance nutrition status.

Every1Mobile’s team participated in the one day workshop, sharing learnings from our projects while making recommendations on the role of the mobile for nutrition outcomes. Mobile technologies can be leveraged for nutrition impact in the following ways:

Social behaviour change communications, information dissemination and market research.

Building digital communities to engage and impact affected populations at scale.

Demand-side interventions through consumer education, product vouchering and feedback loops.

Service provider training and e-learning.

Supply-side interventions through small business capacity building, incentivisation to educate communities and create access to nutrition products at affordable prices.

The workshop participants were drawn from diverse backgrounds bringing about multiplicity of perspectives and experiences. Learnings shared included the importance of localising content, ensuring messaging is user-centric and applicable as well as clinically accurate, and the need to explore interactive channels for information dissemination as opposed to push messaging only.