Once again, if anyone happened to have missed Monday's Keynote speeches from David Molden (Sharing Hindu Kush Himalayan Resources in a Changing World), Poonpipope Kasemsap (Solidarity in a Competing World and Food Security Challenge), and Ann Tutwiler (The Growing Importance of Equity and Fairness using Agrobiodiversity to meet SDGs), please take a look at the professional coverage of the presentations on youtube!
David Molden's presentation:
Poonpipope Kasemsap's presentation:
Ann Tutwiler's presentation:
After his keynote speech at Tropentag 2016, Dr. Poonpipope Kasemsap from Kasetsart University, Thailand had a short discussion with student reporters about his idea of food security and fair use of resources. Dr. Poonpipope Kasemsap stressed that food security will be one of the most urgent issues in the next few decades. Solving this issue requires the constant solidarity and sharing knowledge between the northern and southern globe, from the developed and developing countries. Since humans are the key actors in finding solutions for food security problems, he believes humans are one of the most limited resources that we need to “renew”.
The initiative from the Horticulture Innovation Lab where Dr. Poonpipope Kasemsap is the director is bringing experts and their knowledge to developing countries to improve the situations there. On the other hand, dealing with problems will also enable these experts to enrich the experience and knowledge.
Dr. Poonpipope Kasemsap is also the responsible person for developing the unique master’s degree program “Food Security and Climate Change”, with cooperation between a group of universities from Europe and Asia. The aim of this program is to build a highly qualified human resource to address the issue of food security and climate change in the future.
Keynote Discussion Round
This is arguably the most important part of any public presentation – the opportunity for the audience to engage, comment, and challenge the speakers.
The comment that really stuck out to me from the audience was an attendee from Ghana, who countered the optimism of the presenters by asking “Why do the poor continue to stay poor?”. This is obviously a tough question to try and answer, as no single person or country is responsible for this continued global injustice.
Another comment from the crowd stated that “solidarity has come a little late…but is still welcome”. This is an important reminder that there may still be some resentment circulating between the North and South concerning any possible exploitation or injustice that citizens of developing countries may have experienced.
“Population is rising, and we must therefore produce more.” – Michael Hauser, this year’s keynote session moderator.
Tropentag 2016 kicks off with keynote speeches from three prestigious experts in the world of food security and science. These speakers set the tone for the conference and give the first insights into this year’s topic: solidarity in a competing world – fair use of resources. This is an exciting opportunity to hear words from experts and scientific contributors from around the globe, including Italy (and the United States), Thailand, and Nepal!