JIRCAS 50th Anniversary International Symposium 2020 "The role of international collaboration in agricultural research to address challenges in the post-COVID-19 global food system"

Since the beginning of 2020, the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic have been sweeping the world. The implementation of movement restrictions to control the outbreak has inevitably led to the suspension of economic activities, accompanied by an unprecedented global economic crisis. In turn, the disruption of the global supply chain has raised fears of a food crisis from which food-importing developing countries can disproportionally suffer. By October 2020, as many governments across the world began to ease lockdown restrictions and started to slowly reopen their economies, the COVID-19 epicentre has shifted to developing countries whose agriculture sector has been already stressed due to climate change.  Given the magnitude of health and economic emergencies, the UN has predicted a worsening humanitarian crisis with the rise in the number of people suffering from food and nutrition insecurity.

The challenges facing the global community today, including climate crisis and zoonotic diseases due to environmental degradation, are emerging too rapidly, evolving too fast, becoming increasingly too complex, and affecting too many dimensions of our planet as well as our lives to sustain the resilience of the global food system. The triple crises of climate change, COVID-19, and food insecurity in developing countries are indeed intricately interlinked. Reversing climate change, preventing disease outbreak, and addressing food security in developing countries have to go hand-in-hand through developing and scaling up of climate-smart sustainable agricultural intensification technologies, which contribute to improving yields and resource-use efficiencies while conserving the environment. 

Since its establishment as the Tropical Agricultural Research Center (TARC) in 1970, JIRCAS has been a front-runner in Japan's efforts to collaborate with partners from developing regions and international organizations through joint agricultural research projects. JIRCAS is geared to deal with the above challenges affecting the global food system by taking advantage of its strength based on its 50-year experience of research with partners in developing countries.

This event is expected to promote discussions with JIRCAS’ partners on the challenges affecting the global food system, including those emerging with and likely to evolve after the COVID-19 period. JIRCAS and its partners will exchange views and opinions on how to develop an effective, impact-oriented mode of international research collaboration in order to deal with the above challenges by working with cross-disciplinary teams and by strengthening of ties with implementing partners to develop/disseminate/scale-up technologies swiftly and widely.


Attachment Size
Program (日本語)8.43 MB 8.43 MB
Program (English)8.25 MB 8.25 MB
JIRCAS International Symposium
Organized by

Japan International Research Center for Agricultural Sciences

In cooperation with

Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries


Webinar – broadcast from Tsukuba International Conference Center

Opening remarks

15:00 - 15:10 M. IWANAGA, JIRCAS President

Welcome remarks

15:10 - 15:20 Y. HISHINUMA, Director General, Secretariat of AFFRC, MAFF

Messages from the partners

15:20 – 15:30 K. KADIRESAN, Managing Director, Global Engagement and Innovation, CGIAR

JIRCAS 50th Anniversary – Looking back on experiences in international collaboration in agricultural research

15:30 – 15:50 O. KOYAMA, JIRCAS Vice President

Messages from the counterparts

15:50 – 16:20

  • A. MATSUDA, Vice-President (International Collaboration, Intellectual Property, International Standardization, Public Relations), National Agriculture and Food Research Organization (NARO)
  • T. SUN, Vice President, Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences
  • P. WIRIYAPAHA, Director General, Department of Agriculture (DOA), Ministry of Agriculture and Cooperatives, Thailand
  • M. TRAORÉ (on behalf of Director General H. TRAORÉ), Head of the Natural Resources Management and Production Systems, Institute for the Environment and Agricultural Research (INERA), Burkina Faso
  • L. RAZAFINJARA, Director General, Madagascar Centre National de la Recherche Appliquée au Développement Rural (FOFIFA)
  • K. NAKAMURA, Paraguay (CETAPAR), President of Directive Committee, Fundación Nikkei-CETAPAR (CETAPAR)
Presentation: The impacts of COVID-19 on the resilience of the global food system

16:20 – 16:35 

J. SCHMIDHUBER, Deputy Director, Market and Trade Division

Economic and Social Department Stream, Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO)

Presentation: The post-COVID-19 global agendas for agricultural R4D

16:35 - 16:50 M. IIYAMA, Director, JIRCAS Research Strategy Office

Panel: The modus-operandi of international collaboration

16:50 - 17:25 Chair: JIRCAS Director, Research Planning and Partnership Division, M. SAITO

  • M. IWANAGA, JIRCAS President
  • T. SATO, Vice President, Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA)
  • M. WOPEREIS, Director General, World Vegetable Center
  • N. SANGINGA, Director General, International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA)
Closing remarks

17:25 – 17:30 O. KOYAMA, JIRCAS Vice President

Registration period

国際農研 企画連携部 情報広報室

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