Thursday, November 27, 2014

Philippines: IRRI and CCAFS discuss better collaboration of climate change-related research activities

CCAFS Program Director Bruce Campbell discusses program updates and plan.

CGIAR Program on Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security (CCAFS) Director Bruce Campbell and scientists with the International Rice Research Institute (IRRI) discussed the proper integration and alignment of climate change-related research at IRRI with the overall CCAFS framework during a meeting at IRRI Headquarters on 24 November.

CCAFS addresses the threats to agriculture and food security brought about by a changing climate by exploring new ways of helping vulnerable rural communities adapt to climate change. IRRI plays a key role in pushing for CCAFS agenda, being the lead institute and host to CCAFS Southeast Asia hub.

“CCAFS brings together CG centers and national partners to work on identified Climate-Smart Villages and introduce climate-smart technologies and climate information services, among others,” explained Dr. Campbell. He stressed that a robust and coherent climate change program also entail full integration and strong connection among multiple partners in the scaling up processes. Dr. Campbell reiterated that concerted and unified efforts can place CCAFS on the map in terms of rice methane mitigation research, climate forecasting for farmers, climate information services and other important areas related to agricultural productivity and resilience.

IRRI Director General Robert Zeigler concurred that it is in the Institute’s interest to maintain a coherent program on rice with CCAFS. Dr. Zeigler also said that CCAFS could likewise benefit from IRRI’s huge amount of research on rice. As the lead institution in the region, IRRI is in the best position to outscale cutting-edge rice crop management and production technologies, as it has been doing for decades. IRRI is also strong in rice mitigation research which CCAFS could build on and actively promote.

“Now is the time to look hard at where IRRI can expand relationship with CCAFS, and we’re in a good stage to launch the next stages of good relationship,” Dr. Zeiglar said.

During the meeting, project leaders/representatives presented updates and details of current and future activities. To date, IRRI has 7 projects funded by CCAFS. Key activities of CCAFS SEA will take place in Vietnam, Cambodia, and Lao PDR initially and will expand to include Myanmar, Indonesia and the Philippines.

CCAFS is a collaboration among all 15 CGIAR Research Centers, with the International Center for Tropical Agriculture (CIAT) as the lead institution.

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