CRP evaluation of Roots, Tubers, and Bananas (RTB)

The CGIAR Research Program on Roots, Tubers, and Bananas (RTB),  led by the International Potato Center (CIP), brings together the mandates of four CGIAR Centers related to research on roots, tubers, and bananas: CIP, International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA), Bioversity International, and International Center for Tropical Agriculture (CIAT). In 2013 CIRAD, representing French research organizations became a full global partner with representation in the Steering and Management Committees.

The CRP aims “to more fully realize the potential of [mandate crops roots, tubers and bananas] for improving nutrition, income generation, and food security—especially among some of the world’s poorest and most vulnerable populations.”

The CRP’s mandate is thematically organized around its crops. The crops include banana, plantain, cassava, potato, sweetpotato, yams, and other tropical and Andean root and tuber crops— sometimes termed ‘vegetatively propagated staple crops’. These crops have several issues in common, including similar breeding challenges for highly heterozygous crops, seed management with bulky planting materials, postharvest issues associated with perishability and the frequencywith which women are involved in their production and postharvest use.

As with all CRP evaluations, the purpose of the evaluation of RTB is to provide essential evaluative information for decision-making by Program management and its funders on issues such as extension, expansion and structuring of the program and adjustments in some aspects of the program.

The Team

Jillian Lenne

Evaluation Team Leader

Jillian Lenne has 36-year career in tropical agricultural research, management & development, including 15 years with CGIAR institutes (CIAT and ICRISAT). She has wide experience as a consultant in project and programme review in more than 30 countries in Latin America, Asia and sub-Saharan Africa; across tropical and semi-arid crop management systems. Most recently Dr. Lenne was Team Leader for the ICARDA Centre-Commissioned External Review (CCER) of integration of crop-livestock research. She has served as Team Leader for the IITA Centre-Commissioned External Review (CCER) of the Systems-wide Programme for Integrated Pest Management, and reviewed the Sub-Saharan Challenge Program at its inception phase. Dr. Lenne also served as Deputy Director General – Research at ICRISAT. She is author, co-author or editor of over 150 publications and co-Editor in Chief of Field Crops Research.

KV Raman

Evaluation Team Member

KV Raman is Adjunct International Professor of Plant Breeding & Genetics at Cornell University, as well as Associate Director for Special Projects in International Programs, and Faculty Fellow at the David R. Atkinson Center for a Sustainable Future. He has worked extensively on root and tuber crops. In 1977-92 Dr. Raman worked at CIP, conducting research and technology transfer in effective pest control for potato and sweet potato improvement in collaboration with several national programs in Africa, Asia and Latin America. His Ph.D. research included field studies at IITA. Dr. Raman’s past consultancies include review of the Cassava Biological Control Program at IITA (UNDP); project review of Cassava genetic resources at CIAT (ISAAA); and reviews of CIP’s IPM program in Bolivia and Peru (UK-ODA) and of biotechnology program (USAID). He is an author of over 100 international journal publications on root and tuber crop improvement.

Milla McLachlan

Evaluation Team Member

MillaMcLachlan is Professor at the Division of Human Nutrition, Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Stellenbosch in South Africa. Dr. She has more than 25 years of experience in international social development, with a focus on food security and nutrition, to support institutional transformation for social and ecological benefit. As an independent consultant her clients in the past have included CIP, IFPRI, UNICEF, NEPAD and the World Bank. Her board and steering committee memberships have included the Sweetpotato for Profit and Health Initiative (SHPI), the Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition (GAIN), and the UN Standing Committee on Nutrition. To understand and facilitate transformative change processes, particularly in food systems, Dr. McLachlan has led capacity building and action research activities, and supported the design, implementation, assessment and documentation of food and nutrition security policies and programs.

Selcuk Özgediz

Evaluation Team Member

Selcuk Özgediz is a political scientist and independent consultant specializing in governance and management issues. During a 34-year tenure at the World Bank, Dr. Özgediz served the CGIAR Secretariat for 27 years. As Management Adviser he promoted changes to improve the overall accountability, health and performance of the CGIAR. Before retiring Dr. Özgediz prepared an institutional history of the CGIAR, published by the Fund Office in 2012, and in 2008 was Resource Person for the CGIAR Change Management Working Group on Governance, as well as Coordinator for the CGIAR Senior Managers Courses. He is a veteran of more than twenty CGIAR External Program and Management Reviews (EPMRs). Recent consultancies include work for the World Bank Inspection Panel on governance, institutional development and change management, as well as evaluation of research proposals for the European Commission.

Laurian Unnevehr

Evaluation Team Member

Laurian Unnevehr is Professor Emerita, Department of Agricultural and Consumer Economics, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. She served as Director of the Food Economics Division of USDA Economic Research Service. She spent two years as Senior Research Fellow at IFPRI and at that time was involved in the CRP on Agriculture for Nutrition and Health. Since her Ph.D. dissertation at Stanford on “Cassava Marketing and Price Behavior on Java,” much of Dr. Unnevehr’s research has focused on value chain performance for food security, with emphasis on policy, markets, food safety and quality. Consultancies include service to the Gates Foundation, WTO, OECD, USAID, the World Bank, and IRRI , which is where she began her career as a post-doctoral fellow. She has served on the Editorial Boards of Food Policy and the Review of Agricultural Economics and in 2009 was recognized as a Fellow of the Agricultural and Applied Economics Association (AAEA).