Specialised Masters

Specialised Masters

IPAD: Innovations and policies for sustainable food (Specialised Master's degree®, Montpellier SupAgro) SILAT: Localized information systems for territorial development (Specialized Master's degree®, AgroParisTech) Geomatics, remote sensing (Certificate of Advanced Studies, AgroParisTech)

IPAD: Innovations and policies for sustainable food (Specialised Master's degree®, Montpellier SupAgro)

Innovations and policies for sustainable food

Degree: Specialised Master

Working towards more sustainable food systems

  • Objective: Building sustainable food systems and ensuring food security on a global scale are crucial challenges for the decades to come, mobilising many public and private actors, in the North and the South. These systems must guarantee access for all to food of sufficient quality and quantity and contribute to health. They must also minimise their ecological footprint, reduce waste, ensure fair remuneration within the sectors and create jobs. The aim of the course is to give future graduates the means to participate in strengthening the sustainability of agricultural and agri-food production systems in France, Europe and internationally. It trains high-level executives capable of - understand the sustainability issues of contemporary food; - handle sustainability assessment tools analysing organisational and/or technical innovations that contribute to building more sustainable food systems. Graduates develop a capacity for strategic expertise and prospective analysis that they can put to use in the service of numerous public and private employers.
  • The plusses: A wide range of speakers from the professional, academic and research worlds, enabling the creation of a professional network throughout the course; teaching methods largely based on exchanges, round tables, debates with the speakers, etc.; numerous group or individual assignments: case studies, role-playing, field surveys, etc.; organisation of a professional event, the JIPAD (Innovations for Sustainable Food Day), which enables the promotion of short films made by the students; capitalisation of content via published proceedings; individual tutoring on the professional project; classes with participants from a variety of previous disciplines.
  • Job opportunities: The actors in charge of improving the performance of a firm, a producers' organisation, a territory, an agricultural or agri-food sector at the national level, etc., must increasingly add to the imperatives of economic profitability other objectives linked to the requirements of sustainable development. These changes are dictated by changes in the strategies of these actors, and by States or international organisations (WTO, ILO, etc.) imposing standards and labels, but also by the development of private certifications and, more generally, by consumers and citizens demanding "good, clean and fair" food products.

These developments are leading organisations in the agricultural and agri-food sectors to have to integrate new skills into their teams, skills that IPAD graduates will have at the end of their training.
The IPAD course has been designed to meet the growing demand for managers specialising in the sustainability of agricultural and agri-food systems on an international scale. There are many and varied job opportunities in both the public and private sectors: companies, consultancies, associations, NGOs, local authorities, public administrations, international organisations, etc. Graduates also take part in the creation or development of start-ups or social and solidarity economy structures.
International outlook: CIRAD's lecturers provide an international view of the issues and pioneering innovation fronts. Every year, foreign lecturers come to enrich the training with their insights

In response to the challenges of sustainability of food systems and food security on a global scale, the MS IPAD is a vocational training programme that aims to train experts and managers capable of : - handling sustainability assessment tools and analysing organisational and/or technical innovations; - accompanying these innovations.

Themes: Food, food systems, sustainable development, food and nutrition security, territorial development, policies, governance, innovations, evaluation.

Contents / Programme

The teaching is built in three main stages:

Firstly, it aims to provide students with the knowledge and skills necessary to understand the evolutionary trajectory of food systems, to take stock of the current situation and to analyse the issues at stake:

EU 1

  • Understanding family farming through a systems approach
  • Agriculture and food, sustainability in question
  • International organisations and negotiations on agriculture and the environment
  • Retrospective and prospective analysis of national governance of food systems

A second part is devoted to the acquisition of tools for the evaluation of the different categories of impact and intervention tools:

EU 2

  • Tools for assessing the sustainable development of food systems
  • Assessment of the environmental footprint of food systems
  • Supporting innovations in food systems

A final phase will explore the innovation fronts in different fields:


  • Technical innovations and improved resource management
  • Re-territorialisation of agriculture and agri-food
  • Innovations for food and nutritional security
  • Standardisation of food systems, consumer expectations and practices
  • Sustainable urban food
  • Lobbying and advocacy

During the course of the year, students are also required to carry out a study of a technical or organisational innovation and to analyse its impact and capacity for change at scale (UE 4).

From May to October, students carry out an assignment in a professional situation. The professional mission will focus on the response to issues such as

  • strengthening the sustainability of a production, a local or national development process, etc.
  • development of commodity chains (chain of actors, strategies and coordination, distribution of added value, strengthening cooperation between actors within a commodity chain, etc.),
  • development of producer organisation/coordination, strengthening of collective action capacity (collective brand, collective response to a demand, etc.),
  • Determinants of the construction and sustainability of a network (of innovation)
  • market research (changes in food behaviour, responsible purchasing, etc.)
  • development of innovative resource management systems
  • construction of sustainability indicators

Website LinkedIn

Person in charge - Contact: Pr Stéphane Fournier (Montpellier SupAgro) and Nicolas Bricas (CIRAD) - stephane.fournier [AT] supagro.fr - nicolas.bricas [AT] cirad.fr - isam-ipad@supagro.fr
Partners: Training labelled and supported by UNESCO chair in World Food. Strong partnership with CIRAD, which co-constructed and co-piloted this training.

Training location: Montpellier (Montpellier SupAgro, Lavalette Campus (Institut des régions chaudes) mainly, and Gaillarde Campus)
Language: French (some literature and lectures in English)

#DigitAg Challenges: 5 - 6 - 7 - 8

SILAT: Localized information systems for land use planning (Specialized Master®, AgroParisTech)Programme orienté Agronomie et Sciences de l'Ingénieur

International Master's degree, title "Geomatics Project Manager"

  • SILAT: Localized Information Systems for Territorial Development
  • Target public: Professionals
  • Language: French

This Specialised Master is supported by the international education programmes: World Bank & WWF

Website  &  silat.teledetection.fr

Coordination: Frédéric Portet (AgroParisTech)

#DigitAg Challenges :  1 - 8

Geomatics, remote sensing (Certificate of Advanced Studies, AgroParisTech)Programme orienté Agronomie et Sciences de l'Ingénieur

Certificate of Advanced Studies in Geomatics and Remote Sensing

  • Short programmes of continuing education in Geomatics
  • Target groups: Professionals
  • Language: French


Coordination: Marie-Christine Bois (AgroParisTech)

#DigitAg Challenges :  1 - 8

Modification date: 18 July 2023 | Publication date: 14 September 2022 | By: EM