International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture

Benefit-sharing Fund

Panel of Experts for the Fifth Call for proposals

The Fifth Call for Proposals of the Benefit-sharing Fund (BSF-5) was launched in May 2022.  BSF-5 will support the conservation and sustainable use of plant genetic diversity in order to improve the livelihoods for small-scale farmers in developing countries and promote food security and sustainable agriculture. This fifth project cycle will contribute to the realization of the new programmatic approach for the BSF, as outlined in the Operations Manual for the Benefit-sharing Fund (BSF Manual) of the Funding Strategy of the International Treaty.

According to the Operational Procedures for the use of resources under the Benefit-sharing Fund , an independent Panel of Experts will conduct the screening of pre-proposals and final review of project proposals. The Panel of Experts is designated, from a Roster, by the Bureau in consultation with their Regions.

The Bureau of the Ninth Session of the Governing Body called for nominations of two experts from each FAO Region to form the Panel of Experts for BSF-5. The Panel comprises experts in conservation and sustainable use of plant genetic resources, climate change, food security, poverty alleviation, international policy and development programmes on agro-biodiversity, and on the International Treaty.

The Panel of Experts will screen the eligible proposals and compile a list of high-quality proposals with their rankings for consideration of the Standing Committee on the Funding Strategy and Resource Mobilization (the Funding Committee). After reviewing the Panel’s recommendations, the Funding Committee will make a final decision on the projects to be funded in BSF-5.

AFRICA

AFRICA

Mr Patrick Kasasa is a representative of the Africa Region on the BSF-5 Panel of Experts. He also served on the BSF Expert Panel for the Fourth Call for Proposals.

Mr Kasasa currently is currently a Programme Manager at the Community Technology Development Trust (CTDT), an NGO that actively pursues issues relating to the policies, conservation and sustainable use of plant genetic resources in Zimbabwe. Mr Kasasa has more than 20 years’ experience in programme design and development, monitoring, evaluation and learning, and related research work for sustainable livelihoods programming. Particularly, he worked around seed systems and agro-biodiversity, food and nutrition security and climate resilience, with several donors like Oxfam Novib, SIDA, IFAD, Development Fund of Norway, HIVOS, FAO and UNDP. He also led the implementation of a BSF supported project in Malawi, Zambia and Zimbabwe. He was closely involved in facilitating the introduction of new breeding lines and varieties of sorghum, pearl millets and pigeon peas from the National and International Research Institutions into drought prone communities in Malawi, Zambia and Zimbabwe for evaluation and possible adoption by farmers, using Participatory Variety Selection methods.

Mr Kasasa holds a Master of Agriculture degree from the University of Zimbabwe.


Mr Mahamadou Sawadogo is a representative of the Africa Region on the BSF-5 Panel of Experts. He also served on the BSF Expert Panel for the Third Call for Proposals.

Mr Sawadogo is presently a full professor in Genetics and Plant Breeding and the Head of the BIOSCIENCES laboratory of the Joseph KI-ZERBO University in Burkina Faso, and President of the Scientific and Technical Committee of the National Biosafety Agency. He is also Permanent Secretary of the African Genetics Society. During his career, Mr Sawadogo has been the General Secretary of Ministry of Higher education, scientific research and innovation of Burkina Faso, and member of several Boards and Committees. Numerous are the experiences in research and experiences in field, particularly, Mr Sawadogo has acted as team leader for a Bioversity International project, as National Expert for GIZ, and provided technical assistance for Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa, and others organisations as INERA. Additionnally, he conducted numerous trainings on Plant Breeding and related issues.

Mr Sawadogo earned his PhD in Genetics and Plant breeding from the Russian University of peoples’ friendship, in Moscow, Russia.

ASIA

ASIA

Mr Kodeboyina Sivannarayana Varaprasad is a representative of the Asia region on the BSF-5 Panel of Experts.

Mr Varaprasad is an agricultural scientist with more than 20 years of experience in plant diversity and genetic resources, phytosanitary and crop protection research. Currently, he is a Senior Consultant for several projects and organisations, such as the Asia-Pacific Association of Agricultural Research Institute (APAARI), USAID-USA, RySS – an initiative of Rythu Sadhikara Samstha, and the Global Forum on Agricultural Research and Innovation (GFAR).

In the past, Mr Varaprasad also collaborated with the United Nations Development Programme, the International Crops Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics (ICRISAT) and the Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR).

During his career, Mr Varaprasad contributed in the areas of collection, evaluation, conservation and utilization of plant genetic resources as Head in the NBPGR Regional Station, Hyderabad, for about 26 years. He also served as Director of the Indian Institute of Oilseeds Research (ICAR-IIOR), Rajendranagar, Hyderabad.

Mr Varaprasad earned his PhD in Nematology from the Indian Agricultural Research Institute, New Delhi.

EUROPE

EUROPE

Ms Elin Cecilie Ranum is a representative of the Europe Region on the BSF-5 Panel of Experts. She also served on the BSF Expert Panel for the Fourth Call for Proposals. 

Ms Ranum is currently the Head of the Programme Department at the Development Fund of Norway, where she has overall responsibility for the Development Fund’s programmes in Nepal, Guatemala, Nicaragua, Ethiopia, Somalia, Malawi and Mozambique. Ms Ranum has been an observer to the International Treaty since 2015, and is well-versed with the challenges and possibilities related to its implementation in different parts of the world.

Ms Ranum has in-depth knowledge about the challenges and development potential in rural areas, particularly those of small-scale farmers and indigenous people. She also has considerable experience in sustainable development programmes, particularly vis-à-vis community-based agro-biodiversity management, climate change adaptation and resilient agriculture systems, forestry and REDD+, gender equality and women’s empowerment, and youth and community empowerment. She has worked with development projects in Asia, Africa and Latin America since 2009, and has previously worked and lived in Latin America for 10 years.


LATIN AMERICA AND THE CARIBBEAN

LATIN AMERICA AND THE CARIBBEAN

Mr Alejandro Puglisi is a representative of the Latin America and Caribbean region on the BSF-5 Panel of Experts. He also served on the BSF Expert Panel for the Fourth Call for Proposals.

A biologist by training, Mr Puglisi has 12 years of experience in international cooperation projects (formulation, monitoring, and evaluation) implemented with the assistance of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP). He is currently part of the Follow-up and Monitoring sector of the Directorate of National Implementation Projects (DPROY) in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, International Trade and Worship of Argentina. The Follow-up and Monitoring sector provides technical advice to all the agencies that implement UNDP Projects for the presentation of the cooperation request, the formulation of the project document, revisions to the project document and the preparation of technical progress reports. Likewise, the team keeps the Directorate information system (made up of different databases and monitoring board) updated.

Mr Puglisi also gives advice to the authorities of the National Directorate of Implementation Projects and the General Directorate of Implementation and Project Management of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, International Trade and Worship. In addition, he also has experience evaluating Global Environment Facility (GEF) projects.


Ms Mercedes Rivas  is a representative of the Latin America and Caribbean Region on the BSF-5 Panel of Experts. She also served on the BSF Expert Panel for the Third and Fourth Call for Proposals.

Ms Rivas is a professor in plant genetic resources and plant breeding at the University of Uruguay, and a member of Uruguay’s National Committee on Plant Genetic Resources.

Ms Rivas has participated in the preparation of the First and Second Country Reports on the “State of Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture” in Uruguay. She has also served as a member of the Ad-hoc Group of Experts on the Access and Distribution of Benefits of the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), in addition to working on the elaboration of a legal project on Genetic Resources and Associated Traditional Knowledge in Uruguay.

An agronomist by training, Ms Rivas has a PhD in Plant Breeding and a Master’s in Genetics.


Mr Juan Carlos Rosas Sotomayor  is a representative of the Latin America and Caribbean region on the BSF-5 Panel of Experts.

Mr Rosas is currently Director of Research, Sustainable Tropical Agriculture Graduate Program and Emeritus Professor at the Science and Agricultural Production Department of the Zamorano University, Honduras. Mr Rosas has an extensive teaching experience on Plant Breeding, Agronomy, Basic Grain Crops, Industrial Crops, Plant Biotechnology and Genetic.

Throughout his career, Mr Rosas led more than 40 research projects funded, among the others, by the Bean/Cowpea Collaborative Research Support Program (USAID), the Program in Science and Technology Cooperation (USAID), Feed the Future Legume Innovation Laboratories (USAID), the National Academy of Sciences, the Swiss Development Corporation, and the Norway Development Fund. He has coordinated the Bean Research Network of Central America and the Caribbean for the last 20 years and released more than 70 common bean cultivars in collaboration with researchers from National research Institutions and non-governmental organisations using conventional and participatory plant breeding approaches.

Mr Rosas holds a Ph.D. (1983) and M.Sc. (1982) in Plant Breeding and Plant Genetics, University of Wisconsin, Madison, Wisconsin, U.S.A. and a B.Sc. (1969) in Agronomy, National Agrarian University, La Molina, Lima, Perú.

NEAR EAST AND NORTH AFRICA

NEAR EAST AND NORTH AFRICA

Ms Hanaiya Abbas El-Itriby  is a representative of the Near East Region on the BSF-5 Panel of Experts.

Ms El-Itriby is presently a Professor Emeritus, currently working for the National Gene Bank, Agricultural Research Centre (ARC), Egypt. In the past she has been President of the National Gene Bank (NGB), Agricultural Research Center (ARC), and director of the Agricultural Genetic Engineering Research Institute (AGERI). Ms El-Itriby is member of the Technical Committee, Science and Technology Development Fund. During her career, Ms El-Itriby acted as Vice Chair of the Governing Body of the International Treaty representinf the Near East region, as National Focal Point for the International Treaty and for the Commission on Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture (CGRFA); additionally, she has been member of several Committees and Boards related to genetics.

Ms El-Itriby earned her PhD in Genetics from the Cairo University, Egypt.


Ms Lamis Chalak is a representative of the Near East Region on the BSF-5 Panel of Experts. She has also served on all previous BSF Expert Panels.

Ms Chalak is presently the Head of the Plant Production Department at the Faculty of Agronomy of the Lebanese University (Beirut, Lebanon) and a full professor in the same department, as well as the Head of the National Committee on Plant Genetic Resources in the Ministry of Agriculture of Lebanon. She has also served as Head of Plant Biotechnology Department at the Lebanese Agricultural Research Institute. In addition, Ms Chalak was member of the Team of Technical and Legal Experts on Access and Benefit Sharing for Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture, and the Lebanese Focal Point for FAO in Biodiversity for Food and Agriculture and for GM Foods Platform. She has served as the National Focal Point for the International Treaty (ITPGRFA) and for the Commission on Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture (CGRFA). She was the Regional Coordinator for FAO/TCP/SNO/3401 project on “Optimizing the use of Plant Genetic Resources in Iran, Egypt, Jordan and Lebanon for adaptation to climate change.”. Further, Ms Chalak  is member of diverse scientific committees and national coordinator for several international, regional and national projects.

Ms Chalak earned her PhD in Plant Physiology from the University of Montpellier, France.

NORTH AMERICA

NORTH AMERICA

Mr Campbell G. Davidson  is one of the representatives of the North America Region on the BSF-5 Panel of Experts. He has also served on all previous BSF Expert Panels.

Mr Davidson is a former member of the Canadian Delegation and member of the Bureau of the International Treaty, as well as a delegate to the Commission on Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture. He participated in the “Interim Committee” ahead of the First Governing Body as well as negotiations to develop the SMTA for the International Treaty.

Even after retiring from Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, where he served as Research Scientist (plant breeding), Research Manager, and advisor in Manitoba, Saskatchewan and Ontario, Mr Davidson served as the Chair for USDA External Research Program Review of ornamental crops in 2017; as a member of the Ad hoc Friends of the Co-chairs Group on the Scope of the Multilateral System for the International Treaty (2017); as a Volunteer Facilitator of Biomueso (Museum of Biodiversity) of Panama; and represented Canada on IICA -Procinorte, Norgen and participated in the SIRGEALC 10 Congress on Genetic Resources for the Americas in Brazil in 2015. He has also served as Acting Deputy Director General of the International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA) in Ibadan, Nigeria (2006-07).

Mr Davidson holds a Ph.D. (1986) and M.Sc. (1979) in Plant breeding, University of Manitoba, Canada.


SOUTH WEST PACIFIC

SOUTH WEST PACIFIC

Mr Sam Johnston  is a representative of the South West Pacific Region on the BSF-5 Panel of Experts. He has also served on all previous BSF Expert Panels.

Mr Johnston is currently a Senior Fellow at the Faculty of Law at the University of Melbourne in Australia and is a barrister and qualified solicitor in Victoria, Australia. He is a member of the Environmental and Social Safeguards (ESS) Experts Roster for the Green Climate Fund (GCF), where he is also an Indigeous Peoples consultant. In addition, he serves as a consultant for the World Bank, Asian Development Bank and the United Nations Environment Programme. Further, he is the project director of the International Savanna Fire Management Initiative and project leader for the Commission on Global Scientific Missions for Sustainability. Previously he was a member of the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Environmental Law Commission; and served as a consultant for the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP). He also advises on and teaches International Environmental Law, Law of the Sea and Space, High Seas, Seabed and Antarctic Law.

Over the last 30 years, Mr Johnston has worked on genetic resource issues for various UN agencies, including the International Treaty.

Members of the Panel of Experts of the Fourth Call for Proposals

Members of the Panel of Experts of the Fourth Call for Proposals

AFRICA

Mr Patrick Kasasa
Mr Ahmed Amri

ASIA

Mr Sugiono Moeljopawiro
Mr Tomohiro Kamogawa

EUROPE

Ms Elin Cecilie Ranum
Ms Isabelle Clement-Nissou
Mr Jan Valkoun

LATIN AMERICA AND THE CARIBBEAN

Mr Alejandro Puglis
Ms Mercedes Rivas

NEAR EAST

Ms Lamis Chalak

NORTH AMERICA

Mr Campbell G. Davidson
Ms Tracy Powell

SOUTH WEST PACIFIC

Mr Grahame Jackson
Mr Sam Johnston

Members of the Panel of Experts of the Third Call for Proposals

Members of the Panel of Experts of the Third Call for Proposals


Ms Gigi Manicad
European Region


Mr Jan Valkoun
European Region


Mr Nestor Altoveros
Asia Region


Ms Teresita Borromeo
Asia Region


Mr Ahmed Amri
Africa Region


Mr John Kanthungo
Africa Region

 


Ms Zoila Fundora
Latin and the Caribbean Region


Ms Clara Oliveira Goedert
Latin and the Caribbean Region

 


Ms Lamis Chalak
Near East Region


Mr Seyed Yaghoub
Near East Region

 


Mr Sam Johnston
South West Pacific Region


Mr David Cunningham
South West Pacific Region

 


Mr Bryan Harvey
North America Region


Mr Campbell Davidson
North America Region

 

 

Additional Experts:

 -Mr Peter BRETTING, Senior National Program Leader in Plant Germplasm and Genomes, U.S. Department of Agriculture, ARS.

-Mr Mahamadou SAWADOGO, University lecturer at the University of Ouagadougou and Head for the promotion of research and scientific cooperation under the Ministry of High Education and Scientific Research in Burkina Faso.

-Mr Peter TRUTMANN, President of Global Mountain Action (Switzerland, Peru and Ethiopia).

 

 

Members of the Panel of Experts of the Second Call for Proposals

Members of the Panel of Experts of the Second Call for Proposals

At its Second Session, the Governing Body adopted the Operational Procedures for the Use of Resources under the Direct Control of the Governing Body. One of the main steps in the project cycle of the Benefit-sharing Fund is the appraisal of project proposals. The appraisal is done on the basis of recommendations by a panel of experts designated by the Bureau in consultation with their Regions.

The Bureau of the Third Session of the Governing Body opened the Call for Proposals 2010 and designated the Panel of Experts from a roster of experts to support the appraisal of project proposals submitted within the Call. The Bureau designated fourteen main experts who were designated on their personal capacity. The experts worked without remuneration.

 The appraisal of project proposals was made through a clear, transparent and simple procedure and with the highest quality standards to meet the high expectations on the Benefit-sharing Fund, from applicants, Contracting Parties, donors and possible partner organizations of the Fund. The recommendations made by the Panel to the Bureau helped to ensure that quality and technical merit guided the appraisal and the approval of projects.

The Panel of Experts started its work in early February 2011 and finalized the appraisal of project proposals in July 2011. Individual work was undertaken by the experts, who also met twice in Rome (23-25 February 2011 and 25-27 July 2011) for collective discussions and finalization of the appraisal. Three additional experts who were also designated by the Bureau, assisted to appraise all the proposals.

 


Ms Gigi Manicad
European Region


Mr Jan Valkoun
European Region


Mr Lim Engsiang
Asia Region


Ms Teresita Borromeo
Asia Region


Mr Ahmed Amri
Africa Region


Mr John Kanthungo
Africa Region

 


Ms Zoila Fundora
Latin and the Caribbean Region


Ms Clara Oliveira Goedert
Latin and the Caribbean Region

 


Ms Lamis Chalak
Near East Region


Mr Seyed Yaghoub
Near East Region

 


Mr Sam Johnston
South West Pacific Region


Mr David Cunningham
South West Pacific Region

 


Mr Bryan Harvey
North America Region


Mr Campbell Davidson
North America Region

 

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