The RUFORUM Secretariat was privileged to host Dr. David J. Bergvinson, the Director General of the International Crops Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics (ICRISAT). Dr. Bergvinson was accompanied by Dr. Patrick Okori, Principal Scientist at ICRISAT Malawi, and Dr. Moses Siambi, the Regional Director for Eastern and Southern Africa, ICRISAT. This event took place on the 17th November, 2016 at the RUFORUM Secretariat.
Dr. Bergvinson’s visit to the Secretariat follows previous discussions between the CGIAR Centers and Sub-Regional and National Research Organizations in Africa. This discussions took place at the recently concluded fifth African Higher Education Week and RUFORUM Biennial Conference held in Cape Town, South Africa, 17th – 21st October 2016.
During this visit, the two institutions agreed to explore collaborations in the a number of areas including; mapping out the agricultural human capacity needs in the RUFORUM and ICRISAT member countries; deployment of ICTs in agricultural training, research and extension; Intensifying research on Climate change especially climate smart agriculture, “orphaned” crops and nutritional security; establishing business incubation and entrepreneurship mentorship programmes and attachment of graduate students to ICRISAT research programmes.
The operationalization of the above focus areas will be guided by the existing Memorandum of Understanding signed by ICRISAT and RUFORUM in September 2014. These focus areas will build on PhD and MSc training and research internships currently being implemented by the two institutions. Click here to download the full press release.