The webinar featured keynote remarks from the International Atomic Energy Agency’s Deputy Director General for Nuclear Sciences and Applications, Dr. Najat Mokhtar, the Department of State’s Office of Global Food Security, Dr. Tiffany Oliver, and the Ambassador of the Republic of Malawi, Her Excellency Justice Esme Jynet Chombo. Each keynote speaker stressed the importance of science, technology, innovation, and collaboration in addressing key food security issues in Africa. We sincerely thank our keynote speakers for their support for increased access tools, such as nuclear science and technology, in achieving UN SDG2 (Zero Hunger).   

The webinar also featured a panel discussion, moderated by Dr. Stella Salvo focused on the applications of various plant breeding techniques, including nuclear and isotopic techniques, in creating more climate resilient crops to improve food security. Panelists shared these techniques vary between small holder farmers and large-scale agriculture, what current initiatives exist to provide training and educational opportunities for capacity building in plant breeding, and examples of successful collaborations. This comprehensive discussion showcased the value of engaging experts from a wide range of disciplines, which is a main goal of the SDPU program. The panel left the audience with the understanding that we live in a unique time, with many technological advances and tools that can positively impact food security in the region, but there is a need for greater effort from the wider food security community to expand access to these technologies and opportunities for training. We sincerely thank Dr. Salvo and panelists Dr. Fatma Sarsu, Dr. John Derera, Dr. Kelvin Kamfwa, Dr. Steven Runo, and Dr. Lydia Horn for their insightful contributions.

The recording of the webinar can be found via the resource link on this page. This webinar and the SDPU are jointly funded by the U.S. Department of State and the UK Department for Energy Security and Net Zero.