Partnership on Maize Lethal Necrosis in Africa Makes Significant Progress

Written by Corporate Communications on . Posted in Africa, Maize

By BM Prasanna and Florence Sipalla/CIMMYT

Partners of the Maize Lethal Necrosis (MLN) project in Africa, funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and Syngenta Foundation for Sustainable Agriculture (SFSA), came together to review and discuss the progress and next steps for the project at a workshop on 14-15 May.

“The primary goal of this project is to identify MLN-tolerant germplasm, including inbred lines and pre-commercial hybrids, for potential deployment of MLN-tolerant varieties (with other relevant adaptive traits) through partners in Sub-Saharan Africa. The project also seeks to gain information regarding the genetics of resistance to the disease, create awareness and build capacity for more effective MLN management.

CIMMYT and CIBIOGEM Hold Symposium on Transgenics and Society

Written by Corporate Communications on . Posted in Biotechnology, Events

By Katie Lutz/CIMMYT

CIMMYT, CIBIOGEM and the North Carolina State University (NCSU) transgenics and society group joined together at CIMMYT headquarters on 24 July for the symposium “Transgenics and Society: Towards a constructive dialogue that contributes to policies and regulatory frameworks.” The event was organized to highlight the importance of scientific and moral considerations surrounding individuals’ and hence society’s perspectives about transgenic crops and other emerging technologies.

Beachell-Borlaug Scholar Dreams of Giving Back to Developing Countries

Written by Corporate Communications on . Posted in Africa, Behind the Science, Wheat

By Jennifer Johnson/CIMMYT

Silvano Ocheya is no stranger to the challenges developing countries face in improving agricultural production.

A native of Kenya, Ocheya’s interest in agricultural science started at an early age, growing up on a small farm that his mother ran by herself after his father’s death. “I saw how people back home are struggling, and their lack of knowledge, and thought if we can impact here, we will have an effect on a great number of families, and that is how the country can develop. We can’t think of industrialization until we have enough to feed our families,” said Ocheya.

When Rural Farmers are Given a Voice: Successful Farmers Share Their Experience with Sustainable Intensification

Written by Corporate Communications on . Posted in Africa, Conservation Agriculture

By Christian Thierfelder/CIMMYT

When traveling from Chimoio to Tete along one of the main roads in central Mozambique, one inevitably passes through Malomue, a small rural village in Báruè District. Since 2008, conservation agriculture (CA) technologies and improved drought-tolerant maize varieties have been promoted to farmers through various donor-funded projects, including a USAID-funded Feed the Future initiative.

CCAFS Study Finds Limited Potential of No-Till Agriculture for Climate Change Mitigation

Written by Corporate Communications on . Posted in CCAFS

By Clare Stirling/CCAFS

A study funded by the Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security (CCAFS) CRP involving three CIMMYT staff and an international team of scientists has just been published in the journal Nature Climate Change.

The authors of “Limited Potential of No- Till Agriculture for Climate Change Mitigation” conclude that claims relating to no-till agriculture’s role in slowing climate change may be overstated. No-till and reduced tillage are methods of establishing crops with minimum soil disturbance, in contrast to conventional tillage involving plowing or other cultivation practices.

Precision Farming Down Under at the National Centre for Engineering in Agriculture

Written by Corporate Communications on . Posted in Conservation Agriculture, Events

By Jack McHugh and Francelino Rodrigues/CIMMYT

In late June, while the great majority of the conservation agriculture community converged on Winnipeg, Canada, in the Northern Hemisphere, Dr. Francelino Rodrigues, a CIMMYT pos-doctoral fellow in precision agriculture in the Biometric and Statistics Unid of the Genetic Resources Program, and Dr. Jack McHugh, a CIMMYT cropping systems agronomist in the Global Conservation Agriculture Program, ventured into the much colder Southern Hemisphere to take part in the Digital Rural Futures Conference at the University of Southern Queensland (USQ) in Toowoomba, Queensland, Australia.

Gupta Is New Director General of Borlaug Institute for South Asia

Written by Corporate Communications on . Posted in Announcements, Asia, BISA

By By Scott Mall/CIMMYT

Hari S. Gupta was selected as the second Director General (DG) of the Borlaug Institute for South Asia (BISA) in India and assumed his new position on August 7th. BISA, named to honor Dr. Norman E. Borlaug (1914-2009), world-renowned agricultural scientist and 1970 Nobel Peace Prize Laureate, is helping to meet food security and sustainable productivity growth in both irrigated and rain-fed production areas by adapting wheat and maize systems to the emerging challenges of climate change, natural resource scarcity and market demands. While working at CIMMYT and its predecessor organization, Borlaug’s development of high-yielding, dwarf varieties of wheat helped trigger the Green Revolution in the 1960s. BISA was established in 2011 to catalyze agricultural research for development (AR4D) in South Asia and is a non-profit international agricultural research institute founded by the Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR) and CIMMYT, and managed by the latter.

Sasakawa Africa Association Celebrates the 100th Anniversary of Norman Borlaug’s Birth

Written by Corporate Communications on . Posted in Achievements & Awards, Africa, Borlaug 100

By Jennifer Johnson and Adefris Teklewold/CIMMYT

The Sasakawa Africa Association (SAA) recently joined numerous countries and organizations around the world that have taken time this year to pay tribute to the life and achievements of Dr. Norman Borlaug, holding a series of events from 8-12 July in Uganda to celebrate what would have been his 100th birthday. The theme of the celebration was “Take it to the farmer,” in honor of Dr. Borlaug’s inspiring final words.

The SAA/Sasakawa Global 2000 (SG2000) was founded in 1986 by Japanese philanthropist Ryoichi Sasakawa, former U.S. President Jimmy Carter and Borlaug, who was the president of SAA until his death in 2009.

Ethiopian Government Adopts Quality Protein Maize Scale-Out Plan

Written by Corporate Communications on . Posted in Africa, Maize

By Seifu Mahifere/CIMMYT

The Ethiopian government has embarked on a new initiative to improve nutritional security in the country through the widespread demonstration and use of quality protein maize (QPM), a type of maize that contains enhanced levels of protein. The new government initiative is a high-level endorsement of CIMMYT’s five-year Nutritious Maize for Ethiopia (NuME) project.

The principal goal of NuME is to improve the food and nutritional security of Ethiopians through the widespread application and use of QPM and improved agronomic practices that increase productivity. NuME project leader Adefris Teklewold said, “The new government initiative will play a major role in making the QPM technology and inputs available to a larger number of maize farmers living beyond NuME target woredas (districts).”

Rajeev Varshney Recognized in List of 2014 Highly Cited Researchers

Written by Corporate Communications on . Posted in Achievements & Awards

By Carissa Wodehouse/CIMMYT

Photo of Varshney


Thomson Reuters, a media and information firm, recently released the 2014 list of Highly Cited Researchers, updated for the first time since 2001. Dr. Rajeev Varshney, Research Program Director, Grain Legumes and Director, Center for Excellence in Genomics (CEG), was recognized for his work with the International Crops Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics (ICRISAT). Varshney was associated with CIMMYT from 2007-2013 through the CGIAR Generation Challenge Programme, and so his research papers are associated with both ICRISAT and CIMMYT.

The list was formerly based on total citations, a system which favored senior researchers and could also be skewed by a single popular paper. This year, Thomson Reuters analyzed papers published in science journals between 2002-2012 and ranked them field-by-field using Essential Science Indicators (ESI). Analyzing papers in the top 1 percent by both field and year removed the advantage of older papers that have more time to accrue citations. Researchers who ranked in the top 1 percent by total citations in each ESI field were included in the final list of Highly Cited Researchers. Varshney is recognized in the category of Plant & Animal Science.

The total list of 3,215 researchers can be reviewed and searched by field at

International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center (CIMMYT) Copyright © 2014