CGIAR has enjoyed a long and fruitful partnership with Canada that dates back to 1972, when Canada became a CGIAR founding member. As one of the top five investors in CGIAR research, Canada’s contribution is channeled through two institutions: the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA) and the International Development Research Centre (IDRC).
However, Canada’s role goes beyond providing funds: over the years, it has also provided CGIAR with intellectual leadership, research direction and policy support.
To honor and further strengthen this long term partnership, Carlos Pérez del Castillo, the CGIAR Consortium Board Chair, will travel to Canada on 12-13 March 2012 to participate in a series of high-profile meetings with members of the Canadian government, including the Minister of State of Foreign Affairs (Americas and Consular Affairs), the Honourable Diane Ablonczy, and top leaders from both CIDA and IDRC.
CIDA President Margaret Biggs, and a number of members of the Executive team will meet with Mr. Pérez del Castillo.
In addition to core financial support to CGIAR research, currently, CIDA provides direct funding for two CGIAR Research Programs: Improved Nutrition via Harvest Plus (US$33 mil) and Climate Change, Agriculture, and Food Security (CCAFS) – (US$5.5 mil). Both these Programs have received these funds under Canada’s L’Aquila Commitment.
At IDRC headquarters, Mr. Pérez del Castillo will hold talks with IDRC President David Malone, Director, Agriculture and Environment,
Programs and Partnership Jean Lebel, and IDRC senior management.
He will also participate in an IDRC public event, where he will speak about ‘The role of research in feeding the world’s poor’.
IDRC’s relationship with CGIAR goes beyond that of key research partner: IDRC was instrumental in establishing two CGIAR Centers – the World Agroforestry Centre and the International Center for Agricultural Research in the Dry Areas (ICARDA).
It continues to support CGIAR research by providing funding for CGIAR Research Programs in which Centers and national partners are applying science to strengthen food security, enhance the management of natural resources, mainstream gender analysis, and reduce poverty through research for development.
IDRC’s most recent contribution is a three-year grant to support the CGIAR Research Program on Aquatic Agricultural Systems, one of 15 CGIAR Research Programs.