Friday, 27 May 2011

IFAD to help support diaspora investments in rural development and agricultural projects

May 17-19, 2011. Washington, D.C. The US Department of State, in partnership with the US Agency for International Development (USAID) and the Migration Policy Institute, organized the first ever Secretary’s Global Diaspora Forum, focused on involving US-based diasporas in foreign policy and development efforts to achieve common-interest goals.

The Forum challenged diaspora communities to forge partnerships with the private sector, civil society, and public institutions in order to make their engagements with their countries of origin or ancestry effective, scalable, and sustainable. The Forum took place over three days

One panel was organised around Agriculture and Rural Development. Food insecurity is often rooted in poverty and poses long-term challenges to communities and countries to develop. The global community has launched an expansive effort to eradicate global hunger and achieve food security. This panel, organized in partnership with the International Fund for Agricultural Development, explored the role of diasporas in meeting this objective.

Moderator: Paul Weisenfeld, Assistant Administrator, Bureau for Food Security, USAID
  • Estrella Dizon Anonuevo, Executive Director, Atikha Overseas Workers and Communities Initiative, Inc.
  • Fatumo Farah, Director, Himilo Relief and Development Association
  • Eleanor Nagy, Acting Deputy Coordinator of Feed the Future, Global Hunger and FoodSecurity Office, US State Department
  • Pedro de Vasconcelos, Coordinator, Multi-donor Financing Facility for Remittances
Another panel was organised around Science and Technology. Science and technology are central to addressing major global challenges. Foreign-born scientists in the US contribute to progress in every field of science. For many, maintaining ties with colleagues back home contributes to new research partnerships, increased uptake of new research products or services, and strengthened science policies and practices. This panel focused on the scientific diaspora communities as vectors of knowledge, learning, entrepreneurial partnerships, and science diplomacy.  

Moderator: Dr. Sharon Hrynkow, Ph.D., Senior Advisor to the Assistant Secretary of State for 
Oceans, Environment and Science
  • Dr. Alexander Dehgan, Ph.D. Science and Technology Advisor to the Administrator, USAID
  • Dr. Jorge Gomez, M.D., Ph.D., Director, Office of Latin American Cancer Program 
  • Development, National Cancer Institute, National Institute of Health
  • Dr. Alfred Watkins, Ph.D., Science and Technology Program Coordinator, The World Bank
  • Patricia Zambrano, Senior Research Analyst, International Food Policy Research Institut
Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton’s Opening Remarks:
At the end of her opening remarks, she mentions IDEA will collaborate with IFAD to help support diaspora investments in rural development and agricultural projects.