UD sets symposium on global challenges in agriculture, environment, energy

February 19, 2014 under CANR News, Events

A group of CANR students and professors at UFLA in Brazilsymposium highlighting the global impact of work by University of Delaware and Brazilian faculty, graduate students and undergraduate interns will be held May 21-22 at the Trabant University Center on the UD campus in Newark.

Widely considered one of the world’s most important emerging and developing countries, Brazil has one of the largest and fastest growing agricultural economies in the world and is a major U.S. trade partner.

nterest in Brazil’s rapid transition to global leadership in food and bioenergy production, along with the environmental and economic issues surrounding this transition, has led to partnerships between UD and the Federal University of Lavras (UFLA).

Led by UD’s College of Agriculture and Natural Resources (CANR) over more than three years, a wide range of research projects, faculty and student exchanges, study abroad programs and collaborative workshops have been held.

The symposium will bring together a large and diverse group of UFLA and UD faculty and students to share knowledge on key themes in Brazil that have global impacts on food security and the environment.

Keynote presentations will be made by Luiz Roberto Guimarães Guilherme, professor of soil and environment at UFLA, who will speak on “Brazil’s Role as a Global Food Basket: Challenges and Opportunities.”

Other keynote presentations will be made by Paul Thompson, W.K. Kellogg Chair in Food, Agricultural and Community Ethics at Michigan State University, who will discuss ethical issues related to biofuels, and Delaware Secretary of Agriculture Ed Kee, speaking on the importance of building agricultural links between Delaware and Brazil.

Important themes of the symposium include agricultural innovations for global food production systems; food safety and security in the global food chain; ecology and sustaining and protecting fragile environments; and ethical and public policy issues concerning biofuels.

The symposium is co-sponsored by CANR; UFLA; UD’s Center for Science, Ethics, and Public Policy; UD’s College of Arts and Sciences; the Delaware Environmental Institute; the Institute for Global Studies; and the U.S. Department of Agriculture International Science and Education program.

To obtain more information on the symposium and to pre-register, visit the website.

The institutions have worked cooperatively on a USDA-funded agricultural research project and UD has hosted UFLA speakers.

This article can also be viewed on UDaily.

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UD, Federal University of Lavras conduct agricultural research

July 14, 2011 under CANR News

To expand its global curriculum and stay atop leading international agricultural practices, the University of Delaware College of Agriculture and Natural Resources (CANR), along with the College of Arts and Sciences, has received a $150,000 grant from the United States Department of Agriculture’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture and International Science and Education program (USDA-NIFA-ISE) to continue on a three-year partnership with the Federal University of Lavras (UFLA) in Brazil.

Lead investigators on the grant are Nicole Donofrio, assistant professor, and Tom Sims, T.A. Baker Professor, both from the Department of Plant and Soil Sciences, and Kirk Czymmek, associate professor in the Department of Biological Sciences. The project team, however, is much larger, including 14 UD faculty from seven departments in the two colleges.

Adding another USDA-ISE grant — along with one established to develop coursework regarding sustainable watershed management practices with India in 2008 — means that CANR now has strong connections with two countries that are considered agricultural leaders in the world. And while the new grant will benefit CANR, it also will be valuable to other sections of the University.

Donofrio explained the far-reaching implications of the grant, saying, “Our USDA-NIFA-ISE grant will support undergraduate internships to work with our visiting scientists from Brazil as well as to visit our collaborating university in Lavras, Brazil, to help build teaching modules for incorporation into UD courses.

“The goal here is to recruit undergraduates from across the University, and for them to get ‘real-world’ experience by interacting with Brazilian colleagues both here and in Brazil, in order to make meaningful course modules. The grant will also provide opportunities for as many as 12 Ph.D. students from UFLA to visit UD and spend up to a year working with our faculty on collaborative research projects.”

In the future, the hope is to establish both long-standing academic programs and research partnerships, with both institutions helping each other in those areas in which their research overlaps.

Sims, who is deputy dean of the CANR, spoke positively about the emerging UD and UFLA partnership, saying, “UFLA is an outstanding university, engaged in research and teaching programs that are highly relevant to major contemporary global issues. The grant will provide our faculty with wonderful opportunities to enhance our teaching and research programs related to food security, bioenergy, ecology and environmental quality.

“It will also allow teams of faculty, graduate and undergraduate students to make extended visits to Brazil to broaden their understanding of the complex nature of these critically important areas.”

Read more on UDaily > >

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