Author Archive

Professor Dr. John R. Porter

JRPDepartment of Plant and Environmental Sciences, Faculty of Sciences, The University of Copenhagen, Denmark

Porter is an internationally known scientist in crop ecology and physiology, biological modelling and agricultural ecology. Main contribution has been multi-disciplinary work in the response of arable crops, energy crops and complex agro-ecosystems to their environment with an emphasis on climate change, agronomy and ecosystem services.Porter has published more than 130 papers in reviewed journals and has won three international prizes for his research and teaching and is a former past-president of the European Society for Agronomy. Recently he has led the writing of the critically important chapter for the IPCC 5th Assessment in Working Group 2 on food production systems and food security. He has recently expanded his interest into food systems and food security and was elected Fellow of the Royal Swedish Academy for Agriculture and Forestry in 2014.

Aly Abou Sabaa

Director General, International Center for Agricultural Research in Dry Areas (ICARDA), Lebanon

An Egyptian national and civil engineer by training with a focus on strategic leadership in the fields of sustainable development, operational and policy-based lending, as well as project and portfolio management. At AfDB, Aly Abou Sabaa provided leadership in the preparation and execution of the Bank’s main strategies which had huge impact on the lives of millions of people in Africa. He led the resource mobilization and the management of a US $11 billion portfolio in the areas of agriculture, water, natural resources management, climate change, green development, governance, women and youth, as well as human and infrastructural development. His experience spans more than 35 countries in the Middle East, Africa, Asia and the United States of America.

Ron DePauw

Science Adviser, Advancing Wheat Technologies, Sascatchewan, Canada

Ron DePauw is an internationally recognized scientist, who was born in rural Saskatchewan and raised on a farm near Treherne, Manitoba. Ron has devoted his life to reduce business risk for producers, to meet consumers’ requests for safe and nutritious food, to improve end-use suitability factors, and to contribute to an overall betterment of society and farm economy.

Wheat is the most widely grown crop in Canada, and generates $4 to $5 billion of direct farm receipts and additional $7 to $8 billion in value added processing. Ron actively participated in the registration of 65 wheat and six triticale cultivars. For the past 14 years, 40% to 55% of all of the wheat grown in Canada derived from cultivars that he and the team he led developed. Cultivars developed by Ron and his team exemplify the use of environmentally friendly and low input-cost genetic resistance to control a multitude of diseases and insects.

Ron has published 228 peer reviewed manuscripts, 10 book chapters with another “in press”, and close to 1000 miscellaneous publications including conference abstracts. He has received numerous awards including the Order of Canada, Saskatchewan Order of Merit, Gold Medal from Professional Institute of Canada which has only been awarded 40 times to someone in the field of science, and an Honorary Doctor of Science from the University of Saskatchewan.

ICARDA and Turkey gather international scientists and policymakers to tackle wheat yellow rust disease

In an urgent response to the endemic threat that wheat stripe rust (also known as “yellow rust”) now poses to global wheat production, a partnership of leading international agricultural research centers, national research institutions, and policy makers from rust-affected countries are meeting in Izmir, Turkey during 28 April-01May to review the most recent science innovations, mobilize a global strategy, and initiate action on the ground to combat future rust epidemics. Organized by the Turkish Ministry of Food, Agriculture, and Livestock (Gıda, Tarım ve Hayvancılık Bakanlığı) and the International Center for Agricultural Research in the Dry Areas (ICARDA), with support from the Borlaug Global Rust Initiative (BGRI), the International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center (CIMMYT), the CGIAR Research Program on Wheat, and the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), the event has drawn 200 participants from more than 25 countries.
Read more about the event. (Photo: E. Mohmand/CIMMYT)


Pakistan, Jeanie Borlaug, BGRI and CIMMYT celebrate Borlaug’s 100 years

ISLAMABAD, PAKISTAN: Jeanie Borlaug visited Pakistan during 21-23 April with members of the Borlaug Global Rust Initiative (BGRI) team to celebrate Norman Borlaug’s 100th birthday and the 50th anniversary of Dr. Borlaug’s initial trips to Pakistan. Father of the Green Revolution who passed away in 2009, Borlaug introduced semi-dwarf, high-yielding wheat varieties that dramatically increased Pakistan’s wheat production and helped eliminate famine in South Asia.
Read more on the BGRI blog… (Photo: A. Yaqub/CIMMYT)

Wheat-for-Africa gains momentum

Efforts to put wheat on the food and trade agenda in Africa recently came together at the Forum for Agricultural Research in Africa (FARA) meeting in Accra during 15–20 July 2013, when senior research, development, and policy experts met with representatives of CGIAR’s WHEAT research program to develop a strategy for promoting African wheat production.

Conservation agriculture: The Green Revolution for Africa?

For Africa to benefit, the soil has to improve. The Green Revolution in Africa has to start with smallholder rainfed farmers and conservation agriculture (CA) is a possible intervention, more affordable than, for example, building irrigation schemes. Read an interview with Saidi Mkomwa, Executive Secretary of the African Conservation Tillage Network (ACT) about the current status and future of CA in Africa.