– Interactive Report –

Final Celebrations at Headquarters, 8-9 November 2017

More photos on Flickr – Day 1 / Day 2

8 November

President Juan Manuel Santos joins CIAT50 Celebrations

President Juan Manuel Santos Calderón of Colombia visited the CIAT genebank and awarded CIAT with the National Order for Merit in the degree of Silver Cross on the occasion of CIAT’s 50th anniversary celebrations.

Colombia’s Minister of Finance Mauricio Cárdenas Santamaría addresses the audience and reiterates the importance of the CIAT-Colombia alliance for Colombia and the world

CIAT’s Maria Fernanda Reyes opens the CIAT50 celebrations

Geoff Hawtin, Chair of the CIAT Board, welcomes the participants on this special day of celebrations

More prestigious participants address the audience

Dilian Francisca Toro Torres, Governor of Valle del Cauca

Jairo Ortega Samboní, Mayor of Palmira in Colombia

Gautier Mignot, Ambassador of France to Colombia

CIAT celebrates its partners

Because its achievements in the last 50 years would not have been possible without its hundreds of partners around the world, CIAT took the opportunity of its 50th Anniversary celebrations to recognize just a few key partners in its host country, Colombia. Our thanks and recognition also go to all our other partners in Colombia and elsewhere. Together we will continue to build a sustainable food future for all.

Joe Tohme, Agrobiodiversity Research Area Director, hands the CIAT50 recognition to Dilian Francisca Toro Torres, Governor of Valle del Cauca in Colombia.

Joe hands the CIAT50 recognition to Jairo Ortega Samboní, Mayor of Palmira, Colombia.

Andy Jarvis, Decision and Policy Analysis Research Area Director, hands the CIAT50 recognition to Rafael Hernández Lozano who receives it on behalf of the Colombian National Rice Growers Association FEDEARROZ.

Andy hands the CIAT50 recognition to Dr. Rubén Darío Materón who receives it on behalf of the Regional Autonomous Corporation of Valle del Cauca (CVC).

Andy hands the CIAT50 recognition to Dr. Jesus Sigifredo Valencia Rios who receives it on behalf of Universidad Nacional.

CIAT also acknowledged the importance of its partnerships with Corpoica, ICA, Colciencias, and the Alexander von Humboldt Biological Resources Research Institute.

… and partners recognize CIAT

Geoff Hawtin, Chair of the CIAT Board, receives on behalf of CIAT the “orden al merito vallecaucano” (Vallecaucan Order of Merit) from Dilian Francisca Toro Torres, Governor of Valle del Cauca in Colombia.

Joe Tohme, Agrobiodiversity Research Area Director, receives on behalf of CIAT a tribute awarded by the Municipality of Palmira from Jairo Ortega Samboní, Mayor of Palmira, Colombia.

… Even from the distance

Louise Fresco, President of the Wageningen University, sent a video message to acknowledge more than 40 years of collaboration with CIAT on such topics as beans, cassava, pastures, carbon sequestration and training. Louise also emphasizes areas for future collaboration, especially with the CGIAR Research Program on Climate Change, Agriculture, and Food Security (CCAFS) now hosted at Wageningen.

Akinwumi Adesina, President of the African Development Bank and 2017 World Food Prize Laureate, congratulates CIAT for its work to improve the resilience and incomes of farmers and vows to work together to feed Africa and lift millions of people out of poverty.

Luis Alberto Moreno, President of the Inter-American Development Bank (IADB) believes that agriculture will become an ever greater source of prosperity and that Latin America has the potential to become a breadbasket of the world. IADB is proud to be a partner of CIAT to make this vision a reality and ensure that rural communities share the fruits of this prosperity.

Emeritus Prof. dr. ir. Rudy Rabinge, Wageningen University & Research / Former chairman of the Science Council of CGIAR.

CIAT’s Ricardo Labarta presents some of the impacts of 50 years of collaborative research

During 50 years, CIAT has led the development and dissemination of technologies, innovative methods, and new knowledge that better enable farmers to enhance eco-efficiency in agriculture and contribute to building a sustainable food future.

CIAT scientists have compiled an impressive record of achievements. In the interests of accountability to donors and other stakeholders, and to help guide the Center’s strategic research investments, they have also devoted considerable effort to measure the economic impact of their work.

Ricardo presents some of the main impacts of CIAT’s collaborative research.

Ricardo Labarta is the Leader of Impact Assessment Research at CIAT

The first panel of the day discusses the LAC model

Latin America and the Caribbean: a model for agricultural development and sustainable food systems?

Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC) is poised to be recognized as one of the great food baskets of the world. As one of the most urbanized regions in the world, LAC is already in the future, and it is ahead of the curve in other respects too. Some countries in the region have made considerable advances in the way they produce food, are proud and proven early adopters of new agricultural technologies, and have developed groundbreaking policies on issues from ecosystem services to climate-smart agriculture. LAC really can become the precedent for inclusive agricultural development and sustainable food systems that can both inform and inspire the rest of the world.

Moderator: Juan Camilo Restrepo Salazar, Head of the Colombian Government Peace Negotiating Team with the ELN., Member of the CIAT Board of Trustees, ex Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development of Colombia

Cristián Samper, President and CEO, Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS), and Member of the CIAT Board of Trustees

Julio Berdegué, Deputy Director General and Regional Representative for Latin America and the Caribbean, Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO)

Martín Piñeiro, Director, CEO Group, Argentina

The World Bank’s Juergen Voegele shares his vision of a sustainable food future

The big discussion: Building a sustainable food future

After addressing food systems in Colombia and Latin America, the panelists and participants discuss the global food systems.

Food systems affect and are affected by the social, economic, and environmental contexts in which they operate. Today, they face a massive array of challenges. About 795 million people currently lack enough food to lead healthy and active lives. By 2050, the world’s population is expected to reach 9.8 billion. To feed everyone, we must ensure access to 60 percent more food in ways that enhance the livelihoods of poor farmers and reduce agriculture’s impact on the environment, and we must do so at a time when land degradation and climate change are disrupting the very ecosystem services that are critical to sustainable agriculture.

We discuss the critical roles of climate change research, private sector involvement, and food systems to build a sustainable food future.

Talk 1: The future of climate change research

Moderator: Walter Baethgen, Leader for Latin America and the Caribbean, International Research Institute for Climate and Society, Earth Institute, Columbia University

Margarita Astrálaga, Director, Environment and Climate Change Division, International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD)


Elwyn Grainger-Jones, Executive Director, CGIAR System Organization

Ana María Loboguerrero, Latin America Regional Program Leader, CGIAR Research Program on Climate Change, Agriculture and
Food Security (CCAFS)

Talk 2: Aligning public and private interest to scale up and deliver impact

Moderator: Carl Pray, Distinguished Professor in the Agricultural, Food and Resource Economics Department, Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey.

Marco Ferroni, Chair, CGIAR System Management Board

Phil Pardey, Professor and Director, International Science and Technology Practice and Policy Center, University of Minnesota

John Hamer, Vice Chair, CIAT Board of Trustees

Talk 3: How to achieve sustainable food systems

Moderator: Per Pinstrup-Andersen, Professor Emeritus, Cornell University

Margaret Zeigler, Executive Director of the Global Harvest Initiative

Thomas Reardon, Professor, Michigan State University

Danielle Nierenberg, President, Food Tank

Mark Lundy, Leader, Sustainable Food Systems, CIAT

CIAT’s Director general Ruben Echeverría wraps up the day

9 November

Javier Mateo-Vega, CIAT’s Director of Partnerships and Communications, kicks off the day

European Commission’s Bernard Rey reflects on the changing landscape of agricultural research for development

John Lynam tells the story of CIAT and invites two surprise guests to the stage…

John Lynam served as the economist in the Cassava Program at CIAT from 1977 to 1988 and is the author of the CIAT50 book: Forever Pioneers. 50 Years Contributing to a Sustainable Food Future … And Counting

James Cock was the leader of the Cassava Program between 1974 and 1989. James reflects here on the interdisciplinary crop research teams.

Jacqueline Ashby was the Director of Natural Resources Management between 1996 and 2002. She reflects here on farmer participatory research and the small farmer.

Download: Book   /   Summary

John then facilitates a discussion on social sciences at CIAT

With the following introductory statement – “The mission of CIAT is to accelerate agricultural and economic development and to increase agricultural production and productivity in order to improve the diets and welfare of the people of the world. In addition, CIAT is concerned with increases in buying power of urban residents in the sense that they may be able to purchase more and thus benefit from the increased food supplies.” Later, CIAT’s mission would focus increasingly on raising incomes for smallholder farmers, concentrating on 4 major crops and more recently CIAT has embraced a ‘Sustainable Food Systems’ paradigm. As the CGIAR has evolved into a more development focused organization social sciences become even more important than in the past. What was the original thinking at the beginning of social science at CIAT, and particularly agricultural economics?

Moderator: John Lynam, CIAT Emeritus

Grant Scobie, former Director General, CIAT

Per Pinstrup-Andersen, Professor Emeritus, Cornell University, former CIAT Scientist

Alberto Valdés, International Consultant, former CIAT Scientist

Two more partners mark their long-standing collaboration with CIAT

CIAT’s Director General Ruben Echeverría receives a plaque from Álvaro Roel, President of INIA-Uruguay, in recognition of CIAT’s contribution to improving agriculture through the sustainable management of natural resources.

Ruben receives a plaque from Álvaro Amaya, Director General, Cenicaña, in recognition of CIAT’s contribution to agricultural science and to the fight against hunger and poverty in the tropics.

What’s next for CIAT research? Director General Ruben Echeverría and Senior Scientist Steve Prager share a few words to open the dicussion

Does gene editing mean we can cut and paste our way to sustainable agriculture?

Gene editing is the most exciting area in biology right now. Here we introduce ways it can help us tackle climate change and boost food production.

Joe Tohme presents his vision and discusses with Rob Bertram and Eduardo Trigo

Joe Tohme is the Director of the Agrobiodiversity Research Area at CIAT.

Rob Bertram, Chief Scientist, US Agency for International Development, Bureau for Food Security

Eduardo Trigo, Scientific Advisor to the International Relations Directorate of the Ministry of Science, Technology and Productive Innovation of Argentina

Eating data byte by byte

Data is the flux capacitor of agricultural research, accelerating us into a future of sustainable, resilient food production, where no-one is left behind.

Andy Jarvis presents his vision and discusses with Sara Menker and Greg Traxler

 Andy Jarvis is the Director of the Decision and Policy Analysis Research Area at CIAT.

Sara Menker, Founder and CEO of Gro Intelligence and Member of the CIAT Board of Trustees

Greg Traxler, Former Senior Lecturer, University of Washington

Sustainable food systems for the majority

Sustainable food systems encompass agricultural production systems, market linkages, wholesale and retail food distribution and provide the underpinning for key Sustainable Development Goals. What needs to happen to construct food systems that deliver inclusive, climate resilient, environmentally sustainable and healthy diets for all?

Mark Lundy presents his vision and discusses with Eugenio Díaz-Bonilla

Mark Lundy, Leader, Sustainable Food Systems, CIAT

Eugenio Díaz-Bonilla, Head of the Latin American and Caribbean Program, International Food Policy Research Institute, IFPRI

Investing in green infrastructure

We can have the best of both worlds – competitive and sustainable food production, while protecting the environment and the numerous services it provides.

Marcela Quintero presents her vision and discusses with Daniel van Gilst

Marcela Quintero, Leader, Ecosystem Services, CIAT

Daniel van Gilst, Senior Adviser, Norwegian Agency for Development Cooperation (NORAD)

Presenting Future Seeds

The Future Seeds initiative seeks to build a state-of-the-art genebank that not only ensures their long-term conservation but also encourages their use to enrich diets and to help climate-proof food supply in the tropics.

Peter Wenzl presents his vision and discusses with Luis Calzadilla.

Peter Wenzl, Leader, Genetic Resources, CIAT

Luis Calzadilla, Head of Science and Innovation, British Embassy in Colombia

CIAT Director General Ruben Echeverría closes the celebrations

… Before participants head to CIAT’s trial fields

…and to the closing reception

The End