The Science Forum (SF) was initiated by the CGIAR Independent Science and Partnership Council (ISPC) in 2009 as a means to reach out to scientists and scientific communities largely external to CGIAR, but who could make important contributions to the CGIAR research portfolio and its objectives of reducing poverty, improving food security, human nutrition and health, and environmental sustainability. The first SF was held in 2009 at Wageningen University in the Netherlands on “Science for Development: Mobilizing Global Linkages”. Outcomes and papers were collected into a special volume of the journal Crop Science published in 2010. The second event was held in cooperation with the Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences (CAAS) in Beijing in 2011 on: “The Agriculture-Environment Nexus”. Selected papers covering some of the subjects were published as a Special Feature in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Science (USA). The 2013 SF focused on “Nutrition and health outcomes: targets for agricultural research” and was co-hosted by the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) Germany from Sept 23-25 in Bonn, Germany. A set of papers has recently been published in a special section of Food Security entitled “Strengthening the links between nutrition and health outcomes and agricultural research”. The 10 papers in the issue illustrate how global food systems are changing and suggest how agricultural research needs to change if it is to make a major contribution to nutrition and health outcomes.

The ISPC Science Forum 2016 was co-hosted by the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA).


Maggie Gill (ISPC Chair; Coordinator Scientific Programme Science Forum 2016), Bruce Campbell (Director, CGIAR Research Program on Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security – CCAFS), Gebisa Ejeta (Distinguished Professor of Plant Breeding & Genetics and International Agriculture, Purdue University), Anil Gupta (Founder, Honey Bee Network India & Professor, Indian Institute of Management), Rashid Hassan (Director, Centre for Environmental Economics and Policy in Africa, University of Pretoria), Victor Konde (UNECA), Rajul Pandya-Lorch (Head 2020 Vision Initiative and Chief of Staff, IFPRI), Tom Tomich (ISPC; Director, Agricultural Sustainability Institute & Professor, University of California Davis) and  Preet Lidder (Agricultural Research Officer, ISPC & Science Forum 2016 Coordinator).