May 13th, 2015 @ 1:48 pm by Chancellor Linda P.B. Katehi
This week I attended the Brookings Institute’s Cost of Obesity – a collaboration between the Center for Social Dynamics and Policy and the UC Davis World Food Center – to present new research that quantifies a wide range of the economic costs of obesity.
When we launched the World Food Center at UC Davis almost two years ago, we wanted to partner with researchers like the Brookings Institute to make big inroads when it comes to food and public health.
We established the World Food Center to leverage UC Davis’ expertise as the world’s number one ranked school for agricultural research and scholarship because, like Brookings, we understand that feeding and nourishing the world’s growing population is one of the signature issues of our time.
Thanks to Brookings’ new research that was presented this week, we now have a more holistic assessment of obesity and its devastating impacts on our economy. Impacts from reduced productivity and tax revenues to items such as increased Social Security Disability Insurance payments.
This is crucial because, to craft public policies that are sensible and that will have lasting impact, we need to rely on the kinds of sound research, data and evidence that was presented by Brookings and that UC Davis researchers do all the time.
We all know that it is difficult to achieve real progress in the fight against obesity. But with partnerships like the one between Brookings and the UC Davis World Food Center, we can help make a big difference.
Nutrition and public health are major challenges of our age, and interdisciplinary partnerships like that between our World Food Center and the Brookings Institute are essential to achieving real progress.