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Carolina MacGillavry Award Goes to Two Southeast Asian Teams Doing Collaborative Research on Climate Change Adaptation and Mitigation

Published: 2017-06-23

Twelve teams – comprising 21 women and 20 men – are currently carrying out their collaborative research on climate change adaptation and mitigation under IFS’s partnership with the Southeast Asian Regional Center for Graduate Study and Research in Agriculture (SEARCA). Two of the teams are being funded by the Carolina MacGillavry Award. They are Team AQUASafe with members from Indonesia, the Philippines and Thailand, and Team CHANGE, whose members are from Thailand and Vietnam.

Nighisty Ghezae, DirectorNighisty Ghezae, IFS Director

In honour of the memory of Carolina MacGillavry, the Dutch crystallography scientist who was born in 1904, this award recognizes the top-ranked applications responding to an IFS call for collaborative research. It is funded by a bequest from Professor MacGillavry, to be used to encourage research collaboration by talented young researchers from the developing world.

Team AQUASafe aims to evaluate the application of biofloc technology for the improvement of productivity and environmental sustainability of white shrimp (Litopenaeus vannamei) production as a climate change adaptation strategy in the Southeast Asian shrimp aquaculture industry. The team’s coordinator is Magdalena Situmorang and its other collaborators are Jomar Rabajante and Umaporn Uawisetwathana.

Team CHANGE’s coordinator is Walaiporn Charoensapsri, working in collaboration with Pakkakul Sangsuriya and Viet Nguyen Vuong. They aim to investigate the effect of climate change on the severity of acute hepatopancreatic necrosis disease (AHPND) outbreak against both the causative agent Vibrio parahaemolyticus (pathogen) and on shrimp susceptibility to the AHPND bacteria (host). They also intend to develop a practical cultured condition for solving this outbreak under laboratory conditions.

Collaborative research was introduced into the 10-year strategic plan of IFS in 2011 and first piloted in 2012-2013. The first call for expressions of interest asked for early-career scientists to collaborate on research into neglected and underutilized species. The Pilot 1 countries were Ghana, Nigeria, South Africa, Tanzania and Uganda, with financing from the Carnegie Corporation of New York. The second call for expressions of interest for 2013-2014 asked for applications for research on biodiversity. The Pilot 2 countries were Benin, Burkina Faso, Côte d’Ivoire, Ghana, Nigeria, South Africa, Tanzania and Uganda, financed by Carnegie and the Belgian Science Policy Office (BELSPO).

In 2015, IFS and SEARCA agreed to work together on a third IFS collaborative research pilot in a number of Southeast Asian countries where the two organizations are both active. The call for expressions of interest went out in January 2016 asking for people to collaborate on research into climate change adaptation and mitigation. IFS’s third collaborative research pilot is financed by the Carolina MacGillavry endowment and SEARCA. It covers Cambodia, Indonesia, Lao PDR, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Thailand, Timor-Leste, and Vietnam.

IFS would like to express its deep gratitude to Carolina MacGillavry and her legacy for the support of the work of early-career scientists in the developing world. If you or someone you know – either as individuals or organisational representatives – share our vision and wish to help by making a bequest of financial support to IFS and young researchers, please contact us.


 Nighisty Ghezae, Director



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