A workshop to coordinate research activities within the RICE-CRP was organized by CIAT and I participated as the JIRCAS representative. The workshop brought together members belonging to Flagship Project (FP) 4 (phenotyping/gene discovery) and FP5 (rice breeding) in an attempt to better facilitate interactions between those two teams. I presented ongoing activities conducted at JIRCAS and specifically participated in the working group discussing genome wide association studies (GWAS) and how such studies can contribute to rice breeding efforts through the provisions of novel donors and loci.
Following the workshop, I interacted with the CIAT team conducting genomic selection and genomic prediction studies to learn more about these novel approaches and how our own work with GWAS panels in Madagascar may be used to predict best donors for breeding purposes with modern Malagasy varieties. I further visited field experiments for abiotic stress tolerance screening and learned about the phenotyping approaches taken by CIAT rice breeders and physiologists.