222. CGIAR's 50th Anniversary and One CGIAR
CGIAR is an international organization established in 1971 with the aim of improving the productivity and technological development of agriculture, forestry and fisheries in developing countries, and has led international agricultural innovation. This year 2021, CGIAR celebrates its 50th anniversary. Bill Gates wrote in his blog, "You’ve probably never heard of CGIAR, but they are essential to feeding our future. No other institution has done as much to feed our world as CGIAR.”
Over the last 50 years, the challenges of international agricultural research have constantly changed and become more complex, from eradicating hunger from the time it emerges, to environmental issues, biodiversity conservation, and elimination of poverty and inequality. In response, international agricultural research centers in a wide range of fields such as crops, livestock, forests, fisheries and natural resource management have participated in CGIAR. In recent years, CGIAR participating organizations have been pursuing organic collaborative approaches in order to systematically solve the food and environmental problems in an increasingly globalized world. CGIAR has undergone an organizational restructuring into a unified One CGIAR, aiming for greater integration and leadership in science and technology innovation, while strengthening cooperation with partners more than ever, in order to contribute to solving the food, water and land problems facing the food system of the 21st century.
Japan has made valuable contributions to CGIAR, in terms of financial and human resources, since it joined in 1972. So far, the total number of Japanese staff members (including those dispatched from Japan) who have joined CGIAR has reached 237, and many research results have been achieved. In addition, starting with JIRCAS Pres. Iwanaga, the first Japanese to serve as the Director General of the International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center (CIMMYT), which is one of the CGIAR institutions, more than 70 Japanese scientists have served as CGIAR Center boards and made great contributions to the formation of agenda for international agricultural research.
Taking this 50th anniversary of CGIAR as an opportunity, Pick Up will feature articles looking back into the history of CGIAR, including the transition to One CGIAR, and will summarize the contributions of Japan and Japanese researchers to the activities of CGIAR.
Contributors: SAITO Kazuki (Social Sciences Division・Africa Rice Center), MURANAKA Satoru (Crop, Livestock and Environment Division), IIYAMA Miyuki (Research Strategy Office)