PhD in Entomology; MSc in Agricultural Entomology; BSc in Botany/Zoology
I am an experienced agricultural practitioner with over 10 years of professional experience in food security and crop protection. I have advanced expertise in programme and project management, smallholder farming, Information Communication Technology for Development and frontline agricultural extension. As a Project Scientist and the Plantwise Regional Coordinator for Africa, I coordinate Plantwise backstopping in Africa and the Plantwise project in Burundi which includes substantive, administrative and financial points of view. Previously, I oversaw the successful roll-out of digital tools for agricultural extension work in eight African countries, led an exploratory intelligence gathering initiative on crop protection and implemented experimental trials in both screen house and in the laboratory. I am professionally recognized as a trainer in data management with expertise in course development and training. This experience, coupled with my involvement in agricultural research, has given me knowledge and perspectives in food security and an understanding of the need to develop sustainable community development programmes.
Worldwide, over 500 million smallholder farmers provide food for two-thirds of the earth’s growing population. Achieving a zero hunger world by 2030 depends on increasing the productivity of these smallholder farmers – but their crops face a significant threat. Yearly, an estimated 40% of crops grown worldwide are lost to pests. If we could reduce crop losses by just 1%, we could potentially feed millions more people. The lack of access to timely, appropriate and actionable extension advice makes it a fundamental challenge for farmers to get the right information at the right time to reduce crop losses.