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Nutrition Exchange: Preliminary results from user survey

ENN conducted an impact survey in late 2017 with the aim of understanding how our global network of practitioners and policy makers are engaging with ENN’s core knowledge products (Nutrition Exchange, Field Exchange and en-net). From a total of 122 respondents across the globe, 70 per cent were readers of Nutrition Exchange (NEX) and the majority were from West Africa, East Africa and South Asia.

The survey sought to gauge the extent to which NEX readers benefit from the publication in their professional lives. Of the options presented, the three most frequently selected were:

These are pleasing outcomes as we strive to showcase nutrition issues in an easy format for sharing and learning across all sectors and for actors working nationally and sub-nationally. Many of you have been with Nutrition Exchange from the beginning and there is a steady trend of new subscribers to the publication each year. NEX online content ( is the way most (60 per cent) of our readers engage with the latest issues of NEX and half our readers download NEX as a pdf. As well as the growth of NEX online readership, approximately half our readers continue to receive a hard copy delivered by ENN (47 per cent), some of which are shared with colleagues. Moreover, we received a 100 per cent ‘yes’ response when we asked if readers would recommend NEX as a source of learning and exchange to others, which directly speaks to its relevance and growing audience.

An increasing amount of NEX content is now available in new, accessible digital formats such as podcasts and videos (via ENN’s media hub). We are also keen to hear how we can improve NEX; here are some of the comments from NEX readers about how we can do this:

“The global themes should be more global. It seems [that NEX] is more concerned about some places than others.”

“By documenting information from all areas – even the smallest area in a county or district.”

“…motivate field-based nutrition workers and others to contribute to NEX. Interact and appreciate what they are doing. Work together with them in polishing to suit publication needs…”

“Broaden the list of recipients with national networks around the ministry of health and civil society.” (Translated from French.)

NutritionGroups: A new ENN online platform

Developments in recent years have led to the flourishing of new and diverse networks working on malnutrition at international, regional and country levels. This has created the need for dedicated online spaces that allow for efficient and regular engagement and connection between those who work together face-to-face and those who work together remotely. 

NutritionGroups is a new, online collaborative space for stakeholders working in nutrition and related sectors. It has been designed to enable those working to improve nutrition to better communicate and engage online, upload and share resources and documents, and get the latest updates in closed groups. NutritionGroups builds on ENN’s experience with en-net, but rather than provide a space for public discussion, it enables closed conversations between peers on joint work, planning and collaboration.

Many nutrition professionals cannot or do not wish to use mainstream social media sites at work. The NutritionGroups site provides the functionality of popular social media sites, but has been set up as a dedicated professional page to ensure that communication and collaboration can happen more efficiently. Groups on the platform are private and only invited members of a group can participate and access the content. Moderators come from the groups themselves.

Groups will be set up by request and can include nutrition practitioners and stakeholders at any level. For example, a country-level group might include the multi-stakeholder platform group, with the SUN Focal Point as moderator and members from the different platforms and sectors. The possibilities are endless: NutritionGroups is a platform that enables real-life networks of people working in nutrition to work together more efficiently. 

For more information visit, or to request a group page please contact You can also find us on social media; Facebook and Twitter: @NutritionGroups 

Release of latest Operational Guidance on infant and young child feeding in emergencies (Version 3)

The Operational Guidance on infant and young child feeding in emergencies (OG-IFE) is a key global policy document to inform country-level emergency preparedness, response and recovery programming. It was endorsed by a World Health Assembly Resolution in 2010.

Version 3 of the guidance was released in October 2017. The update was undertaken by the IFE Core Group in consultation with international, regional and country informants, co-led by ENN and UNICEF.

It provides concise, practical guidance on how to ensure appropriate infant and young child feeding in emergencies. It applies to emergency preparedness, response and recovery worldwide to minimise infant and young child morbidity and mortality risks associated with feeding practices and to maximise child nutrition, health and development.

It is relevant for policy-makers, decision-makers and programmers working in emergency preparedness, response and recovery, including governments, UN agencies, national and international non-governmental organisations, donors, volunteer groups and the private/business sector. It is also relevant across sectors and disciplines.

Changes to the new version include:

•       Greater emphasis on the lead role of government in preparedness and response;

•       More content on emergency preparedness;

•       Greater clarity on the respective roles and responsibilities of UN agencies;

•       Greater coverage of sectors other than nutrition and more explicit actions to take;

•       Updated to reflect latest global guidance;

•       Greater programmatic detail in all sections;

•       Greater and more balanced content to address needs of non-breastfed infants;

•       More comprehensive content on complementary feeding; and

•       An extensive list of supporting references and resources, with weblinks.

The OG-IFE is available in soft copy in English, French and Arabic; translation into more languages is underway. All content is available at: A series of Powerpoint slides to help in dissemination to different target groups is also available.

Print copy is available in English from UNICEF country offices and through IBFAN ( and ENN (postage costs apply).

Special edition of Field Exchange on nutrition cluster coordination

ENN has produced a special edition of Field Exchange (Issue 56) on nutrition cluster coordination. Guest edited by Josephine Ippe, Global Nutrition Cluster (GNC) Coordinator, Field Exchange editors have worked closely with the GNC team and country cluster coordinators to identify and distil key learnings from their experiences, which are documented as field articles. The issue includes articles from Afghanistan, Sudan, South Sudan, Somalia, North-eastern Nigeria and Ethiopia. Experiences of the OFDA-funded technical rapid response team also feature, with case studies of advisor experiences during deployments worldwide. Summaries of the latest GNC strategy and guidance developments at global level are also included.

Field Exchange 56 is available in English and French (individual articles) at:, where you can also order print copies.

Children who are both wasted and stunted at the same time

ENN recently published an article about children under five years old (CU5) who are stunted and wasted at the same time (referred to as ‘concurrence’). Children who are both wasted and stunted have a greatly elevated risk of death, which is why it is important to understand the prevalence and burden of concurrence in this age group. Data came from Demographic and Health Surveys and Multi-indicator Cluster Surveys (MICS) from 84 countries. It was found that the pooled prevalence of concurrence in the 84 countries was 3 per cent, ranging from 0 to 8 per cent. Nine countries reported a concurrence prevalence greater than five per cent. The estimated burden was close to six million children. The prevalence of concurrence was highest in the 12 to 24-month age group and was significantly higher among boys compared to girls. Fragile and conflict-affected states reported significantly higher concurrence (3.6 per cent) than those countries defined as stable (2.24 per cent).

The analysis represents the first multiple-country estimation of the prevalence and burden of CU5 who are concurrently wasted and stunted. Given the high risk of mortality associated with concurrence, the findings indicate a need to report on the condition and investigate whether the children are being reached through existing programmes. To read the full open-access article, click on the following link:

Stunting in emergencies

Building on a technical briefing note published in 2015, ENN has just released a follow-up discussion paper titled Stunting in Protracted Crises. ENN is concerned with stunting in these contexts because up to 45 per cent of the global stunting burden is found in fragile and conflict-affected states. Unless inroads are made into preventing stunting in these contexts, this proportion is likely to rise (as stunting prevalence reduces in more stable contexts), and we will be unable reach the global WHA targets and sustainable development goals of stunting reduction by 2025 and 2030, respectively.

This paper sets the stage for discussions to be held in 2018 on policy and programming implications. It has a strong advocacy message; namely that a reduction in stunting (or at least no increase) should be viewed as a legitimate humanitarian goal in the same way that prevention and treatment of wasting is seen as a legitimate development goal. The paper contains a number of conclusions and recommended ways forward.


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What's new at ENN?. Nutrition Exchange 9, January 2018. p8.



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