A Global Agricultural Research Partnership

CGIAR Consortium appoints new Chief Science Officer (CSO)

The CGIAR Consortium  is pleased to announce the appointment of Professor Wayne Powell as its new Chief Science Officer. Professor Powell, currently Director of the Institute of Biological, Environmental & Rural Sciences (IBERS) at Aberystwyth University in Wales, will assume his new position in January 2014 on a 50% basis, until April 2014 when he will join the team full time. This appointment follows the announcement that the CGIAR Consortium’s current Chief Science Officer, Dr. Anne-Marie Izac, will retire at the end of 2014; Dr. Izac will continue to serve as a strategic advisor throughout 2014.

Professor Wayne Powell has more than 25 years’ experience working in the field of contemporary plant genetics, and is currently Director of the Institute of Biological, Environmental & Rural Sciences (IBERS) at Aberystwyth University in Wales. Prior to this, Professor Powell was Director and CEO of the National Institute of Agricultural Botany (NIAB) in Cambridge, following his post as Professor and Foundation Head of the School of Agriculture and Wine, University Adelaide, Australia.  He also held the position of Deputy Director of the Scottish Crop Research Institute (SCRI), Dundee, UK, from 2000-2004 and was responsible for leading and facilitating the development of the Institute’s scientific vision, with overall responsibility for the Institute’s research programs.  Between 1998 and 2000 Professor Powell worked at the Du Pont Company in Wilmington, Delaware, USA, where he gained experience operating within a global private sector organization.

“We are thrilled that Wayne has decided to join CGIAR,” says Frank Rijsberman, CEO of the CGIAR Consortium. “Wayne is no stranger to the CGIAR system. He chaired the Program Advisory Committee of CGIAR’s Generation Challenge Programme, and  participated in a scoping study of genetic resources in CGIAR as a cross-cutting issue. He is well known and highly regarded across the agricultural research sector.”

Professor Powell’s personal research interests are at the interface of plant genetics, genome science, plant breeding and conservation of genetic resources with a strong emphasis on the delivery of ‘public good’ outcomes.  He has published over 265-refereed scientific papers, presented numerous invited papers at international meetings and successfully supervised more than 25 PhD students and numerous visiting workers.  He maintains an active research group, continues to write grants to support his research from a diverse range of funding sources and has an extensive international network of collaborators and contacts.

Wayne Powell is a native of Abercraf, Wales, UK and is a passionate follower of rugby.

Professor Powell takes over the role of Chief Science Officer from Dr. Anne-Marie Izac, who will retire at the end of 2014. Between January and December 2014, Dr. Izac, who has worked with CGIAR for nearly 20 years, will serve as a strategic advisor to Dr. Rijsberman and the Consortium. Dr. Anne-Marie Izac was Chief Officer of the Alliance of fifteen International Agricultural Research Centers from 2006 to 2010 and Chief Executive Officer for the interim Consortium from January to October 2010.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *