Monday, 15 March 2010

Why should public funded research invest more in innovative approaches: statement by Emile Frison (Bioverstiy International)

During the The 17th Brussels Development Briefing on Biodiversity and Rural Development in ACP countries (10th March 2010), Dr Emile Frison, Director General, Bioversity International, Italy, made a presentation on the key relationship between biodiversity and agriculture.

In this video clip he makes a strong statement on why public funded research should invest more in innovative approaches? 

Biodiversity should be used as an entry point to more diversified systems that can provide:
  • better livelihoods
  • better nutrition
  • more sustainability
  • more resilience and stability 
We have to look at alternative sources of supply and where international investments can be most productive. The private sector is investing just in maize research one and a half billion dollars per year [1,5 billion USD / year). The amount of public funded research is even not a third of this figure. We must also look at other emerging countries like China, Brazil, India, and the role that they play and try to complement that: specifically addressing the needs of poor farmers in Africa who are dependent on a broad range of diverse species. And that is receiving far too little attention.