Archive for the ‘Education’ Category
MSU Extension is now offering Integrated Pest Management Academy Online, a series of online prerecorded webinars available to the public. Commercial and private core pesticide recertification credits are available for Michigan applicators. No registration or fees are required.
This series of integrated pest management on-demand webinars have been created to help Michigan growers identify pest management resources and understand IPM basics. Viewers can earn up to four pesticide recertification credits.
The following webinars are currently available for viewing:
Introduction to Integrated Pest Management: Learn about the history of pest management, the evolution of IPM and the tenets that define implementation in the field.
Integrated Pest Management Resources: Learn about IPM resources available from Michigan State University and MSU Extension.
Entomology 101: In this compact session on insects, learn the vocabulary to help you properly identify insects and better understand the role of insects in the world.
Plant Pathology 101: This introductory webinar covers the basics of plant pathogens and introduces viewers to some popular control methods.
Soil Science 101: This webinar highlights the importance of soil characteristics and their potential impacts on agricultural producers.
Plant Science 101: Learn the basics of plant anatomy and physiology — particularly handy for those who struggle with weed identification.
Pesticides 101: An introduction to mode of action, pesticide resistance and factors that impact efficacy.
Insect Scouting in Fruit Crops: This primer offers a fruit-specific module on how insect scouting occurs in the real world.
BCPC launches new online Manual of Biocontrol Agents
The new 5th edition of BCPC’s Manual of Biocontrol Agents – a toolbox for biocontrol and Integrated Pest Management (IPM) – was launched as an online resource at the Annual Biocontrol Industry Meeting (ABIM), in Basel, Switzerland in October.
“In my lifetime the world population has doubled and it is forecast to double again by 2050,” explains editor, Dr Roma Gwynn. “Alongside many other issues, this increase puts tremendous pressure on farmable land, requiring a doubling in output per unit area. If we are to conserve biological resources and ensure food security in a sustainable way, we need to use the best crop protection technology and methods available. Integrated Pest Management – including the use of biological control agents such as macro-organisms, micro-organisms, botanicals and semiochemicals – will play an important part, and it is encouraging that demand for and availability of these technologies is increasing rapidly.”
The Manual of Biocontrol Agents can support this progress, having been substantially revised to reflect the growth and maturity of the global biocontrol industry. All the active substances and products that are included are commercially available. And being an online resource it can be updated quickly and regularly ensuring accurate and comprehensive information is available on more than 300 active substances including: 100+ macro-organisms, 120+ micro-organisms, 40+ botanicals and 50+semiochemicals. The data provided for each active substance includes information on: the products, biological activity, toxicology, resistance codes, nomenclature, targets and companies.
Compiled by experts in the biocontrol industry the Manual of Biocontrol Agents is an invaluable resource whether you are a grower, researcher or regulator. And for those who still love paper – a book will be available early in 2014.
To subscribe to this unique resource visit www.bcpcdata.com. A single user annual subscription costs £295 + VAT, discounts are available for ABIM members. For multiple users and intranet access contact: email@example.com Tel: 01420 593200 for a quotation.
Two books highlight crop protection research in Micronesia
NGAREMLEGUI STATE, PALAU. Dr. Aurora G. Del Rosario, Researcher/Extension Specialist, Palau Community College Research and Development Station.
For the past 20 years, research in Crop Protection proved to be a successful undertaking. Research culminated in the publication of two important books on crop protection.
The first publication written by Nelson Esguerra and Aurora Del Rosario is a 214-page book entitled “Economic Entomology in Micronesia” published by PCC-CRE and College of Micronesia in 2007. It showcases biological information on 84 major pests of crops in Micronesia which are described and augmented by 369 colored photographs of the damage and different life stages. Students in agricultural science as well as researchers and extension agents will find this book very useful.
The second book published by the COM Land Grant Program is entitled “Biological Control Introductions in the Freely Associated States of Micronesia”. It is a 136 –page document which covers the use of good insects to control pests of crops in the Freely Associated States of Micronesia from 1986 to 2009. Primarily, it involved introducing biological control agents in the Republic of Marshall Islands, the four island states of the Federated States of Micronesia and the Republic of Palau. Many of the introduced good insects reduced the target pests to non-damaging levels in these island nations. It also includes some biological control agents that remained in the islands and continuously controlled the pests despite releasing those 10-15 years ago. The authors are Nelson Esguerra, Aurora Del Rosario and Thomas Taro.
Innovation That’s Making a Difference: Integrated Pest Management in South Asia
The Hon. Marty McVey is a member, appointed by the U.S. president, of USAID’s Board for International Food and Agricultural Development (BIFAD).
The BIFAD advises and makes recommendations to the USAID Administrator on food security, development efforts, and implementation of the Foreign Assistance Act of 1961. It also monitors progress.
During his second trip in January with the Feed the Future Innovation Lab: Collaborative Research on Integrated Pest Management (formerly the Integrated Pest Management Collaborative Research Support Program), McVey visited food security projects in India, Bangladesh and Nepal. India is a strategic partner with Feed the Future, and Bangladesh and Nepal are Feed the Future focus countries.
We asked McVey a few questions about his visit and the exciting collaborations and progress he observed.
First, tell us a little about your trip. Where did you go and why were you there?
I accompanied a team of Integrated Pest Management (IPM) Innovation Lab personnel from Virginia Tech, Penn State, and the Ohio State University to South Asia to review the activities of the IPM Innovation Lab in this part of the world. I attended workshops, regional planning meetings, toured facilities of private sector and NGO partners), and met with U.S. Ambassadors, USAID Mission directors, partner scientists, farmers, and members of farming cooperatives in India, Bangladesh, and Nepal.
The purpose of my trip was to see how Feed the Future’s goals are being accomplished, particularly through the work of the IPM Innovation Lab with its many partners and programs in South Asia. What I learned was encouraging.
Who did you spend time with during the trip? How did you see various food security actors, particularly from the research community, interacting and working together to achieve Feed the Future goals on the ground?
In Bangladesh, scientists from all three countries I visited, as well as representatives from USAID and The World Vegetable Center, attended a regional planning meeting for the IPM Innovation Lab’s Southeast Asia project. Interaction among scientists from the United States and host countries was lively and facilitated collaboration.
While visiting with the vice chancellor of Tamil Nadu Agricultural University in India and our partnering scientists at that institution, I observed their strong commitment to working with us to foster increased use of organic farming methods.
In India, scientists from Senegal, Kenya, Ghana, and Guatemala—supported by Feed the Future through the IPM Innovation Lab—attended a biocontrol workshop centered on the use of Trichoderma (a beneficial fungus used to attack fungi with deleterious effects) and Pseudomonas (a beneficial bacterium). Each of the scientists gave a presentation on the work they were doing in their home country. Through this kind of support, Feed the Future is exponentially expanding its impact and providing opportunities for scientists to learn new techniques. Those scientists then return home and share what they’ve learned, which translates to better in-country capacity.
The IPM Innovation Lab has also partnered with the Biocontrol Research Lab, a private company in India that produces biocontrol products to help farmers safely grow highly productive crops.
Through this partnership, farmers can learn about the benefits of using biocontrol methods to control pests and plant diseases and with the increased income they generate through these methods they are able to expand their use of such products. Companies find a viable niche in the economy. Everybody wins: Farmers increase their incomes without depleting or harming the soil and environment, companies are successful, and local communities have more and healthier produce to buy and consume. Public-private partnerships like this are helping to ensure that food security efforts in India are sustainable.
In each country I visited, the USAID Missions were pleased with the work of the IPM Innovation Lab and expressed that IPM Innovation Lab efforts are helping to achieve impact in advancing food security. In Bangladesh and Nepal, they are working to implement IPM packages (a set of techniques designed for a particular crop) in Feed the Future target regions.
What impact did you see the IPM Innovation Lab having? How was it making a difference?
In Nepal, pheromone trap technology introduced by the IPM Innovation Lab is helping coffee producers manage the white stem borer of coffee, a serious pest in the region. Classical biocontrol of the papaya mealybug, thanks to an IPM Innovation Lab initiative, has restored production of papaya, mulberry, cassava, eggplant, and other crops to the pre-incidence level in southern India. And in Bangladesh, the IPM Innovation Lab helped successfully reverse the decline in eggplant production, a staple crop, by introducing eggplant grafting in 2004 to combat bacterial wilt. The farmers were very appreciative of this initiative.
The adoption of Trichoderma and Pseudomonas in vegetable farming in India is extensive. In Bangladesh, Trichoderma is produced with compost and distributed to farmers. The adoption of culture to attract and kill the melon fly on bitter gourd farms in Bangladesh is also very popular. The popularization of Trichoderma throughout the tropical world is spectacular and should be continued as it makes such a difference in the lives of smallholder farmers.
From your tweets, it looks like you spent some time with smallholder farmers. How was the IPM Innovation Lab working with them, particularly women farmers? What did the farmers have to say?
There are many success stories coming out of these countries regarding integrated pest management (IPM) thanks to the involvement of the IPM Innovation Lab. The farmers themselves are perhaps the most inspiring.
One of the biggest stories for me was my colleague’s account of a visit to a village near Kathmandu, Nepal. In this small village, women have been so successful at using IPM techniques that they are able to buy clothes for their children, pay for more schooling for them, and even build houses with the extra income they generate.
At another farmers’ cooperative, I learned that while it only has 27 members, 500 people benefit from the work of the organization. A woman sits at the head of this group. The members of this organization are able to make small loans to other members, allowing them to buy materials for building greenhouses, drip irrigation systems, sticky traps, or pheromones. All of this is allowing women farmers to sustainably grow more and healthier produce.
At a coffee plantation in Nepal I heard this story repeated: “Ninety percent of the beans that we grow are of better quality since we started using IPM techniques,” one woman said. And I learned from our collaborating partner in Nepal, iDE, that it focuses on working with women because they’re more reliable and committed than the men, and they are also better savers.
What encouraged you most about this trip, the projects you saw, and the people you met?
I was most inspired by the difference that Feed the Future, through the IPM Innovation Lab, is making in the lives of women farmers. I saw this with the women agricultural students and farmers who I met at the Sri Avinashilingam Krishi Vigyan Kendra University in India and with the women farmers who I met in Nepal.
Women farmers see firsthand how using biocontrol methods produces vegetables and crops that are safer and of better quality. They are using the extra income to improve the lives of their families. And they are forming organizations to extend the benefits to each other through loans. They’re also extending benefits beyond their organizations by working with other women’s cooperatives.
During my visit to the women’s agricultural university, I spoke to a large group of several hundred women farmers. It was encouraging to see these young women take a positive step for their own future and that of their communities by investing in themselves and in the future of agriculture through higher education. The university is set up such that it not only trains women in agriculture, but it also encourages small businesses by training students in activities such as fabric production and handcrafts.
What key messages will you take back to the BIFAD on the value/success of the IPM Innovation Lab?
Overall, the progress toward Feed the Future’s goals was encouraging.
South-South collaboration is strong and yielding results. The biocontrol workshop at Tamil Nadu Agricultural University was an example of this. By providing training to promising young scientists in other developing countries, the program is extending the benefits of IPM methods.
The research and practitioner community is flexible, responding to new challenges as they arise. Policy-makers sometimes lag behind. As scientists learn of new invasive pests and diseases, they are quick to adapt, figuring out new solutions to challenges on the ground. Government officials often lag behind in understanding the importance of acting quickly and red tape can slow effective techniques.
Women are making strides. Where women are allowed or encouraged to have agency in their lives, they are making a huge difference.
While adopting new strategies is risky for subsistence farmers, once they see results they become evangelists. To the subsistence farmer, new practices are suspect: If you are just barely getting by, why try something that may remove even that tiny profit altogether? And yet, from my visits to farming villages and through meeting with farmer collectives and speaking with farmers themselves, I learned that once a farmer sees (often through demonstration plots) that these new methods can work, they become enthusiastic advocates.
Public-private partnerships are promising. Public-private partnerships across the countries we serve through the IPM Innovation Lab were inspiring, with strong partners in every country that are helping create self-sustaining programs.
Change is incremental, but nonetheless effective. While we don’t always get a dramatic splash for our investments dollars in the developing world, it is money well spent. The smile on the face of a woman who has built a house using money she earned from IPM methods is invaluable. The pride of the young women embarking on higher level agricultural studies was inspiring. The enthusiasm of our scientist partners from developing countries attending the biocontrol workshop was gratifying as well. Often, as I mentioned above, it can be difficult to persuade a farmer to adopt new methods. But once we do, and are successful, word of mouth spreads to other farmers and villages and extends across a region. Over time, this has a huge impact.
Follow McVey on Twitter for more on his trip and future updates. McVey will brief the public on his trip at the BIFAD board of directors meeting this Friday, March 15. Check out the webcast on Friday. We’ll also post the meeting minutes later on the USAID website.
13th International IPM Congress
Healthy and Sustainable Agricultural Production
The Integrated Pest Management Congress is held every two years in different countries to bring together experts on the subject to share and analyze the technical, scientific and methodological progress that has taken place in the field in recent years and other related subjects. It is directed at researchers, technicians, professors, agricultural producers, students and industry representatives interested in presenting their work and updating their knowledge in the field. The Conference will include lectures, symposiums and simultaneous presentations on different subjects, as well as a part with posters, banners and commercial exhibitions. In addition, pre-Congress courses will be offered, dealing with IPM-related subjects in greater depth.
Researchers, technicians, professors, producers, students and the agricultural industry in general.
October 17, 18 and 19, 2012
Tegucigalpa, Honduras. Hotel Honduras Maya
Kind of Participant
Before August 31
Before August 31
*Students are required to present their student ID card.
The registration fee includes educational materials, an attendance certificate, participation in all of the scientific and social activities, as well as food (coffee breaks, lunch and a welcome cocktail the first day; coffee break, lunch and dinner the second day, and lunch and coffee break the final day).
Ways of participating in the Congress
You may participate as:
- A sponsor through different sponsorship categories and forms, which are described in the “Forms of Sponsorship” section.
- A presenter of a research paper on one of the subjects enumerated in the following section.
- Simply as a participant in the Congress.
SUBJECTS FOR PRESENTATION OF SUMMARIES
The subjects for presentation of summaries are the following:
- Diagnostics in the 21st century: new technologies for diagnosing pathogens.
- Food Safety
- Extension technologies
- Innovations in pest control
- Biotechnology in phytoprotection
- Integrated management of urban, industrial and livestock pests
Information about the guidelines for the delivery and presentation of summaries can be requested at the following email address: firstname.lastname@example.org from Ms. Paola Domínguez.
In the framework of the 13th International Integrated Pest Management, the following pre-Congress courses will be held on October 15 and 16 of this year:
- Herbicides: Application and Mode of Action
Directed at: Professional who work in the sale and/or application of herbicides.
Place: Panamerican Agricultural School. Zamorano.
Date: October 15 and 16, 2012
Capacity: 100 people
The course focuses on:
- Herbicide application (nozzles, water, fertilizers and other additives)
- Herbicide absorption by roots and leaves
- Interaction between herbicides and the soil
- Herbicide movement in xylem and phloem
- Frequent mistakes in herbicide application
- The selectivity of herbicides (Why are crops unaffected by certain herbicides?)
- Herbicides’ modes of action (How do herbicide kill weeds?)
- Discussion of the most widely used herbicides in Central America.
- The technology of herbicide-resistant crops and the development of resistant weeds.
Dr. Ian Zelaya, Syngenta
Dr. Mike Owen, Iowa State University.
Dr. Steve Weller, Purdue University
Dr. Abelino Pitty, Zamorano
- Massive Multiplication of Trichogramma parasitoids
Directed at: Agricultural Engineers and specialists in entomology interested in learning about the biological fundamentals and the technical particulars of massive multiplications of Trichogramma parasitoids.
Place: Panamerican Agricultural School.
Date: October 15 and 16, 2012
The course focuses on:
- Presentation of the taxonomic, biological and ecological characteristics of trichogramma parasitoids, which explains their success as biological control agents.
- Historical summary of research on and use of trichogramma parasitoids in the world and especially in Uruguay.
- Bases and characteristics of a trichogramma production unit.
- Requirements and particularities of trichogramma release techniques.
- Case studies of application of trichogramma parasitoids based on ecological fundamentals.
Dr. César Basso, Agronomy Department, Universidad de la República de Uruguay.
- Use of entomopathogenic nematodes for pest control: an opportunity for benefitting agricultural producers
Directed at professional and technicians in the agricultural sciences who work with crops in private enterprise, professionals of government organizations, students and researchers.
Place: Panamerican Agricultural School.
Date: October 15 and 16, 2012
Capacity: 50 people
The course focuses on:
- Biology of entomopathogenic nematodes.
- Isolation of entomopathogenic nematodes.
- Isolation and importance of symbiotic bacteria
- In vivo production.
- In vitro production in solid and liquid mediums. Importance of the geometry of the leavening agent.
- Adriana Sáenz Aponte, MSc, Pontificia Universidad Javeriana, Colombia
- Norberto Chavarría Hernández, PhD. Universidad Autónoma del Estado de Hidalgo, Mexico.
- Diagnosis of plant pathogens through final-point PCR and real-time PCR.
Directed at: Professionals in the agricultural, biological or microbiological sciences who work in research laboratories, educational institutions and industry.
The course focuses on: using a combination of theory and practice for the diagnosis of plant pathogens through in vitro replication and detection of DNA fragments.
- Techniques for collecting and transporting samples prior to analysis.
- Procedure for extracting DNA from the vegetable tissue for analysis.
- Procedures for real-time PCR and final-point PCR, applications, advantages and disadvantages.
- The procedures for displaying and interpreting the results.
Capacity: 15 people
Duration: 4 days. October 8, 9, 10 and 11
Instructor: Estela Yamileth Aguilar, coordinator of the pathogen diagnosis and research laboratory in Zamorano’s Agronomy Department.
To register to the congress or pre-congress courses visit http://www.zamorano.edu/congresomip2012
FORMS OF SPONSORSHIP
There are a number of actors that play key roles in the IPM area in the region, and it very important for the Organizing Committee to count on the support and presence of these companies at the Congress.
In addition to being a Congress participant, it is possible to participate in the Congress as a sponsor, and there are different sponsorship forms.
The following are the different opportunities:
- Deposit the desired quantity in cash ($).
There are 3 categories:
- Diamond IPM Sponsor (More than $ 1,100)
A Diamond Sponsorship gives the right to registration fees for 2 Congress participants, the placement of the company logo in event publicity and Congress documents (invitations, a digital summary of the Congress to be delivered to each participant), a link to the company web site on the Congress web page, Zamorano digital bulletins and a “Diamond IPM Sponsorship” recognition during the event.
- Platinum IPM Sponsor (From $600 to $1,100)
A Platinum Sponsorship gives the right to a registration fee for 1 Congress participant, the placement of the company logo in event publicity and Congress documents (invitations, a digital summary of the Congress to be delivered to each participant) and a “Platinum IPM Sponsorship” recognition during the event.
- Gold IPM Sponsor (From $100 to $599)
A Gold Sponsorship gives the right to the placement of the company logo in event publicity and Congress documents (invitations, a digital summary of the Congress to be delivered to each participant) and a “Gold IPM Sponsorship” recognition during the event.
- 2. Sponsor one or more of the 5 coffee breaks at the Congress
If a company chooses to sponsor one or more of the planned coffee breaks, it will be able to make short presentations about the company and/or its products during the 15-minute break, providing informative brochures or showing a brief video presentation about the company. Likewise, they can place banners and other promotional materials to promote the company’s products in the room where the coffee break will be held.
- 3. Sponsor part of the welcome cocktail event
One or more companies could participate in this sponsorship option so that, at the moment of welcoming the participants, they can be exposed to different important regional IPM institutions. This is also an opportunity for the sponsoring companies to provide the participants with publicity about their companies or their products.
- 4. Sponsor one or more of the 3 lunches at the Congress
This option also provides an opportunity to make presentations about the company and/or its products during the 90-minute lunch period, providing informative brochures or showing a video presentation about the company. Likewise, they can place banners and other promotional materials to promote the company’s products in the room where the lunch will be held. This space will be designated for promotional purposes.
- 5. Sponsor transportation of a tour for the attendees who wish to tour Zamorano to observe IPM activities in the area.
This option allows a company to provide a company bus with its name and logo to transport the participants on the tour; alternatively a company may deposit the money so that we can contract the transportation service. As in the other options, this provides an opportunity for a company to promote itself and its products.
- 6. Sponsorship through the purchase of Congress-related Souvenirs
The following are products or souvenirs that will provide lasting memories of the Congress and are ideal gifts for the participants in the 13th International Integrated Pest Management Congress.
There are products including tote bags, pens, briefcases and thermoses for hot or cold drinks.
In addition to being useful for the participants, these products can serve as promotional tools for your companies and/or their products where (depending on the product you decide to sponsor) we will print your company logo alongside that of the IPM Congress.
In the event that a company is interested in sharing the costs of the same gift the spaces for printing logos will be shared.
For further details regarding souvenir type, payment mount or any other doubt, please communicate with Ms. Paola Domínguez at the following email: email@example.com
For any further information required:
Contact person: Ms. Paola Domínguez
Cell phone number: (504) 94632923
January 27, 2012
LINCOLN, Neb. — A hands-on course on the basics of invasive plant ecology and management for public and private landowners, managers, students and others will be offered at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln’s West Central Research and Extension Center in North Platte this summer.
The three-day short course is June 26-28. It will include presentations, hands-on workshops, site visits and instructor-led discussions on the latest in invasive plant ecology and management.
Course moderator and Extension weed ecologist Steve Young said the course will focus on learning the principles of integrated weed management, herbicide modes of action, plant identification, biological controls, using technology to analyze invasive plant species populations and instruction on using restoration practices for managing invasive plants.
“Last year was our first year for the NAIPSC short course. We’ve modified it this year to address the most pressing subjects, like water use by invasive plants and developing a basic management strategy using GPS and mapping in a full day field exercise. West Central Nebraska hosts many of the same invasive plant species found throughout North America, so it is an ideal location for the course,” he said.
Course instructors are from UNL as well as from across the country, including Oregon, Wyoming, Montana, Oklahoma and South Carolina.
Registration is $650 and includes course materials, meals and transportation to off-site locations. Registration deadline is May 1 and the course is limited to the first 40 applicants. The NAIPSC course is primarily for land managers, public and private landowners, researchers, policymakers and students.
Continuing education unit credit is available from the Society for Range Management and other sponsoring organizations and graduate students can earn up to two academic credits by completing online assignments following the course.
Course cosponsors include Nebraska Department of Agriculture, Soil and Water Conservation Society, Society for Range Management, Center for Invasive Plant Management, Midwest Invasive Plant Network and others.
Agronomy & Horticulture Weed Ecologist (308) 696-6712
Steve Ress Nebraska Water Center – Communications Coordinator (402) 472-3305
The mission of the Doctor of Plant Health Program at the University of Nebraska–Lincoln is to produce plant practitioners with broad expertise and experience across the various disciplines that impact plant health and plant management. These plant practitioners (plant doctors) will integrate from across this expertise to diagnose and solve plant health problems and to develop integrated plant and pest management systems that maximize the system’s economic, environmental, and social sustainability.
This academic year (2011-12) the Doctor of Plant Health program has added five new students to the roster. Since January 2010, enrollment has grown from one student that first semester to eleven students currently taking classes. One of the huge benefits now available for the graduate students was the completion of the DPH Graduate Student Center located
in Plant Sciences Hall. This summer students will be undertaking internships in with seed/chemical companies, horticultural industry, and university research and extension programs. For more information on the Doctor of Plant Health Program see the website: www.dph.unl.edu or call 402-472-3365.
Gary L. Hein, Director
Doctor of Plant Health Program
279D Plant Science Hall
P.O. Box 830933
Lincoln, NE 68583-0933
Science and Development Network
6 January 2012 | EN
[KAMPALA] East and Central African countries should establish a new generation of innovation-oriented agricultural universities that would help integrate research, training and extension services, a conference has agreed.
The recommendation came at the close of the first General Assembly of the Association for Strengthening Agricultural Research in Eastern and Central Africa (ASARECA), held in Uganda last month (14–16 December).
The ASARECA assembly agreed to foster partnerships within individual countries and across the region, including closer collaboration between research, training and extension service providers, and more private sector engagement in commercialising research outputs.
The new universities, said the recommendation, should be anchored in ministries of agriculture but linked with other ministries such as education, environment and transport. That would eradicate the disconnection between National Agricultural Research Institutes (NARIs) and training in various faculties of agriculture at existing universities.
Currently, NARIs report to ministries of agriculture, while faculties and colleges of agriculture report to ministries of education.
“There is an urgent need to create a new generation of innovation-oriented agricultural institutions that bring together in an efficient way agricultural research, training, commercialisation and extension,” wrote Calestous Juma, professor of the practice of international development at the Harvard Kennedy School, United States, in the Kenyan newspaper Daily Nation.
Juma said Africa is dominated by fragmented approaches where separate, and poorly-linked, institutions often report to different ministries.
This, he said, can be overcome by adding research and extension components to existing agricultural universities, and creating the new generation of agricultural universities recommended by the assembly. Their core functions would be upgraded training, extension and commercialisation for existing NARIs, and agricultural innovation.
All these options, he said, need high-level political commitments.
Paul Kibwika, a senior lecturer at the Department of Agricultural Extension Education at Makerere University, Uganda, agreed that political commitments would be essential. And he added that new policies would also be required: “In most countries [in the region] the ministries of education accredit the universities — how would they share this mandate with the agricultural ministries?”
Eldad Tuhakirwa, deputy executive director of ASARECA, said the organisation can only promote the idea but does not have the money to finance it.
“This was a dialogue between the different stakeholders at the meeting and they came up with that recommendation. Our role is to promote the idea through our network so that governments that have the money can implement it.”
ASARECA was established in 1994 and its member countries are Burundi, Democratic Republic of Congo, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Kenya, Madagascar, Rwanda, Sudan, Tanzania and Uganda. It works to promote science and technology and innovation to help feed the region in the 21st century.