CRP evaluation of Genebanks

The Genebank CRP concerns the work of the 11 CGIAR center genebanks.  The objective of this research support program is to conserve the diversity of plant genetic resources in CGIAR-held collections and to make this diversity available to breeders and researchers in a manner that meets high international scientific standards, is cost efficient, secure, reliable and sustainable over the long-term. The Global Crop Diversity Trust (Trust), the lead organization for this CRP, coordinates the Genebanks CRP as per an agreement between the CGIAR Consortium and the Trust. Through the Genebank CRP, the Trust has oversight and financial responsibility for the CGIAR genebanks.

The Genebank CRP funding complements the long-term grants provided by the Trust to most of these genebanks, but the CRP expands on the Trust’s role by aiming at having built, by the end of the CRP’s 5-year plan in 2016, an endowment sufficient to fund 100% of the operating costs of the CGIAR genebanks.

The primary purpose of this evaluation is to improve the efficiency, effectiveness and sustainability of the management of the CGIAR’s crop collections for secure conservation and enhanced use of the collections. The evaluation will provide essential evaluative information for decision-making by the CGIAR System Council, Genebank CRP Management, the Trust and CGIAR Centers with genebanks. At a time when the first phase of the Genebanks CRP is ending, the evaluation the evaluation will provide assessment of the CRP’s performance since its beginning and provide lessons and recommendations to strengthen the operations and management of the Program in the next phase.

The evaluation will assess the extent to which the CRP has made progress in achieving the desired results according to its objectives and has brought about positive changes in key areas of activity.

The Team

Michael Jackson

Team Leader

Mike began his career in genetic resources in the 1970s during eight years at the International Potato Center (CIP), Peru followed by a decade on the faculty of The University of Birmingham, UK. In 1991, he joined the International Rice Research Institute (IRRI) in the Philippines to manage the world’s largest genebank for rice as program leader for genetic resources and first head of the Genetic Resources Center. From 2001 until his retirement in 2010, he served as IRRI’s Director for Program Planning and Communications. He has over 40 years research experience, with more than 125 scientific papers and book chapters on genetic resources conservation, evaluation and use, and biosystematics, as well as pre-breeding, agronomy, and plant pathology. He is author/co-editor of four books on genetic resources, the most recent (in 2014) about genetic resources and climate change. He has a BSc (botany and geography, 1970) from the University of Southampton, and MSc (1971, genetic resources) and PhD (1975, potato biosystematics) degrees from The University of Birmingham.

Brian Ford-Lloyd

Team Member

Brian’s career in plant genetic resources began under the guidance of Jack Hawkes and Trevor Williams at the University of Birmingham in the early 1970s. His career continued in Birmingham becoming Director of the Master’s course in Conservation and Utilization of Plant Genetic Resources. At the same time his research continued on aspects of genetic resources conservation and use involving a range of crops such as sugar beet and rice. He has co-authored ten books on different aspects of plant genetic resources, 34 book chapters, and has published over 110 research papers covering molecular genetic diversity on the one hand and plant tissue culture on the other. While continuing in research Brian was awarded a Chair and moved into administration acting as Head of Biosciences at the University of Birmingham and then Director of the University Graduate School, joining the University senior management team. He received an Honours degree in Botany and a PhD (Biosystematics of the genus Beta) from the University of Birmingham and has recently become Emeritus Professor.

Marisé Borja

Team Member

Dr Marisé Borja, Chief Technical Officer at Plant Response Biotech S.L. and Associate Professor at the Universidad Complutense de Madrid, has over 30 years’ experience in R&D in the Ag-Biotech sector in both US and Europe. She is an expert for the EU Commission in committees related to biotechnology, agriculture and environment for more than 20 years. She has been leading evaluator for the EU funded Genetic Resources programs. She has managed a private company germplasm collection for 15 years. She has been a Principal Investigator in more than30 international Industry-Academia collaborative projects and has published more than 50 Research papers. She has wide experience in bringing results from basic research science to the market and in IPR issues for which she was the ISF (International Seed Federation) ornamental representative at the UPOV. She has also been a Fleuroselect Board member. She has a BSc (molecular biology, 1987) and PhD (1991, genetic resources) degrees from the Universidad Complutense and MSc (1997, bioethics) degree from the University of Comillas.