Innogen · News · July 7, 2008

Shaping Scientific Excellence in Agricultural Research

newsletter march 2008

A recent article in 'id21:Communicating Development Research' discusses Innogen agricultural research.

'Science and technology are central to development in Africa. But scientific solutions to development problems are not always appropriate to the places where the problems arise. How can scientists be supported to develop appropriate, innovative and sustainable solutions to problems?

Researchers from (the ESRC Innogen Centre, based at) the University of Edinburgh and the Open University, both in the UK, suggest that finding solutions in agriculture and poverty should involve scientists from several disciplines working together. Solutions should also involve development partnerships and networks. Peer review publications, the traditional tool of scientific excellence, do little to promote researchers from different disciplines working together in partnership.

This is illustrated by examining research into two African cattle diseases, East Coast Fever (ECF) and trypanosomiasis, at the International Livestock Research Institute. Since the late 1970s, approaches to researching these diseases have changed significantly. At first, scientists were based in laboratories, searching for vaccines. But after fifteen years of effort and high quality scientific research, it became clear that vaccines were not going to provide simple solutions.'

Please follow this link to read the full article at id21 Natural Resources - Communicating Development Research

For additional information please contact Professor Joanna Chataway or Dr James Smith.