Global leaders to keynote Borlaug Dialogue
The World Food Prize will welcome to the stage in October three key global leaders: Tony Blair, former Prime Minister of Great Britain and Northern Ireland; Ã“lafur Ragnar GrÃmsson, current president of Iceland; and Cardinal Peter K.A. Turkson, president of the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace, at the Holy See in the Vatican.
They will join over 1,000 international scientists, public policy experts and business and government leaders from more than 65 countries during the 2013 Borlaug Dialogue from Oct. 16 to 18 in Des Moines, Iowa. This global gathering has been called the “premier conference in the world on global agriculture.”
The 2013 Borlaug Dialogue will focus on the theme, “The Next Borlaug Century: Biotechnology, Sustainability and Climate Volatility.” The conference will inaugurate the yearlong Borlaug Centennial Observance, celebrating the 100th anniversary of the birth of Norman Borlaug, founder of the World Food Prize. The conference will explore how the global food, agriculture and development community can best harness the many tools and technologies available to feed our growing population in an increasingly volatile climate.
Blair, in his current role as patron of the Africa Governance Initiative, will speak on a panel titled “40 Chances,” which represents the number of growing seasons that a farmer can expect during his or her lifetime. With the theme of “Redefining the Fight Against Hunger, Poverty and Suffering,” this panel will also include Howard G. Buffett, farmer and president of the Howard G. Buffett Foundation, and Ritu Sharma, founder and chief executive officer of Women Thrive Worldwide. It will focus on the drivers of food security including aid effectiveness, trade, private sector investment, and technological innovation, and will also announce new joint programming designed to foster market-based solutions for addressing global challenges related to hunger, poverty, and conflict.
GrÃmsson has identified the need to combat climate volatility as one of the most pressing current issues worldwide. He convened the Global Roundtable on Climate Change and has brought Iceland to the forefront of global green energy leadership.
Turkson of Ghana has served as the president of the Roman Catholic Church’s Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace since 2009. He has focused on the importance of addressing food security issues long-term by respecting the land and rural populations, and promoting agricultural development in poorer countries.
Governmental leaders will include: Hon. Akin Adesina, Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Nigeria; and Hon. Peter Mwanza, Minister of Agriculture and Food Security, Malawi.
Business leaders will include: Liam Condon, CEO, Bayer CropScience; Mark Kahn, partner, Omnivore Capital; Ellen Kullman, chair and CEO, DuPont; Chris Nelson, president and CEO, Kemin Industries; Victoria Podesta, vice president and chief communications Officer, ADM; and Balram Singh Yadav, managing director, Godrej Agrovet Ltd.
International governmental organization leaders will include: Kanayo Nwanze, The United Nations’ president of the International Fund for Agricultural Development; Jomo Sunduram, assistant director-general, Economic and Social Development Department, United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization; Juergen Voegele, sector director, Sustainable Development Network, The World Bank; and Ren Wang, assistant director-general, Consumer and Food Protection Department, United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization.
Non-governmental organization leaders will include: Howard G. Buffett, president, Howard G. Buffett Foundation; Lisa Dreier, director, Food Security and Development Initiatives, World Economic Forum; Chris Elias, president, Global Development Program, The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation; Tim Hanstad, president and CEO, Landesa; Hans Herren, president, Millennium Institute; Jacqueline Mkindi, executive director and CEO, Tanzania Horticultural Association; and Ritu Sharma, co-founder and president, Women Thrive Worldwide.
Scientists and academics will include: Yemi Akinbamijo, executive director of the Forum for Agricultural Research in Africa; Jahi Chappell, assistant professor, Environmental Science and Justice, Washington State University – Vancouver; Sir Gordon Conway, professor of International Development, Imperial College, London; Sir Brian Heap, professor, St. Edmund’s College; and Hermann Lotze-Campen, co-chair, Climate Impacts and Vulnerabilities, Potsdam Institute for Climate Research.
The Borlaug Dialogue will take place in conjunction with the 2013 World Food Prize Laureate Award Ceremony, where we will this year honor the pioneers of biotechnology: Marc Van Montagu of Belgium, and Mary Dell-Chilton and Robert Fraley of the United States.
For the full symposium agenda and to register for events, go to www.worldfoodprize.org/agenda.
The World Food Prize is the foremost international award recognizing the achievements of individuals who have advanced human development by improving the quality, quantity or availability of food in the world. The Prize was founded in 1986 by the late Norman E. Borlaug, recipient of the 1970 Nobel Peace Prize. Since then, the World Food Prize has honored outstanding individuals who have made vital contributions throughout the world. Thirty-six laureates have been recognized from Bangladesh, Brazil, China, Denmark, Ethiopia, Ghana, India, Israel, Mexico, Sierra Leone, Switzerland, the United Kingdom, the United Nations and the United States. The World Food Prize also annually hosts the Borlaug Dialogue international symposium, and several youth education programs including the Global Youth Institute and Borlaug-Ruan International Internship to inspire the next generation to explore careers in agriculture and food security.