IATRC Travel Grant Recipients attend the European Commission Pre-conference event of the ICAE in Milano, Italy.

Organizers: Professor David Lobell, Stanford University

Impressions from Travel Grant Recipients

Benjamin Wood (International Initiative for Impact Evaluation), Hoa Hoang (University of Missouri), Kateryna Schroeder (The World Bank), and Sebastien Pouliot (Iowa State University)

The ICAE 2015 pre-conference workshop “Global food security challenges” was certainly a memorable event for us. It featured preeminent global food security practitioners that shared their views on current and future food security challenges that we, as young researchers, need to tackle in our work. It also provided us with priceless networking opportunities with both pre-conference participants and speakers, which, as Tassos Haniotis acknowledged, are of great importance for young professionals, as it helps us in developing our networks during this important stage in our careers.

We heard presentations from a wide range of speakers, which provided us with an immense learning opportunity. They ranged from global level discussions to the country specific ones, targeting diverse factors that shape state of food security in different countries. For example, Shenggen Fan, Director General of IFPRI, started an intriguing debate by asking why China, Brazil, and India, country leaders in agricultural R&D funding, do not perform as well when it comes to agricultural innovation. Nega Wubeneh, Senior Director of Ethiopian Agricultural Transformation Agency, focused on the country-level assessments of agricultural extension workers in Ethiopia, and wondered why the country still does not experience more agricultural gains. All presentations were of great quality and many more would be worth mentioning.

We cannot thank enough the European Commission, IATRC, and the co-organizers of the workshop for making this opportunity available to all four of us.

Pre-conference Event Program [PDF]