Directorate / Ethiopia / Event / Food Security / Human Health / ILRI / ILRI40 / Livestock / Poultry / Poverty / Pro-Poor Livestock / Spotlight

Addis Ababa conference marks 40-year anniversary of world’s leading livestock-research-for-development institute


Franz Marc, The Yellow Cow, 1911 (via Wikiart).

To mark 40 years of international research this year, the International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI) has been facilitating a series of events highlighting the ways livestock research advances the global development agenda, specifically for food and nutritional security, economic well-being and healthy lives.

This Thursday and Friday (6–7 Nov 2014), ILRI is hosting a two-day high-profile conference in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, where ILRI has a principal campus and, with a wealth of partners in Ethiopia and around the world, has carried out livestock research for development for the last four decades.

This livestock research by ILRI and partners in Ethiopia and beyond is behind products and practices helping millions of people in developing countries produce food and generate income. It is creating new tools and evidence to help decision-makers tackle risks and grasp benefits caused by rising demands for livestock foods and fast-changing livestock systems in developing countries. And it is providing game-changing options to guide and fine-tune trajectories of future livestock production systems so they provide sustainable, equitable and resilient futures for all.

Distilling lessons from the past, articulating today’s challenges and looking to the future, this conference will help determine how livestock research can contribute to the world’s sustainable development goals, whether by generating research products (performing) or targeting research investments and policymaking (informing) or reshaping whole livestock production systems (transforming).

The first day of the conference will take place at the Sheraton Hotel, where the morning will start with His Excellency Demeke Mekonnen, deputy prime minister of Ethiopia, giving an inaugural address. Kanayo Nwanze, president of the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), will then give the keynote address. And Bill Gates, co-chair of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation (BMGF), will deliver a message to ILRI and its partners via a short video.

Later in the morning, His Excellency Teferra Derebew, minister of agriculture in Ethiopia, will set the scene for the day’s presentations and discussions. Following this, ILRI board member Lorne Babiuk, vice-president for research at the University of Alberta, will give a short presentation on livestock and health issues, trends and challenges; and then Henning Steinfeld, chief of livestock information in the sector analysis and policy branch of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), will speak on livestock and environment issues, trends and challenges.

Over lunch, guests will be able to review a series of science posters describing livestock research projects and their impacts on people’s lives.

After lunch, a series of three lively roundtable discussions helped crystallize issues at the interface of livestock development issues with food and nutritional security, economic well-being and healthy lives.

Chagall_The Rooster_1929

Marc Chagall, The Rooster, 1929 (via Wikiart).

Provocative and participatory wrap-up sessions will close the first day’s proceedings, including announcement of a new collaboration for African Chicken Genetic Gains.

On the following day, Friday, 7 Nov, the conference moves to ILRI’s campus in Addis, where a series of ‘hard talks’ and ‘food for thought’ sessions and a ‘dragon’s den’ will attempt to nail down ways to ensure that livestock research serves sustainable development for the next 40 years.

Plenary sessions of both days of this ILRI@40 conference will be livestreamed here:

Visit to find out about the other ILRI@40 events.

Follow #ilri40 on Twitter.

Watch video’s from the Addis Ababa event

Read recent blog posts about ILRI@40:

African animal agriculture: Grasping opportunities as a great livestock transition gets under way, 4 Nov 2014

A major presentation on ‘the power of livestock’ to transform today’s resource-scarce agricultural lands, 27 Oct 2014

In Des Moines for the World Food Prize? Join the special BMGF-ILRI livestock roundtable this evening, 15 Oct 2014

ILRI turns 40: Nairobi headquarters marks the anniversary, 6 Oct 2014

This week ILRI hosts a major conference in Nairobi on livestock-based options for development, 29 Sep 2014

Livestock innovation systems: Research contributions from ILRI over the decades, 23 Sep 2014

Natural resources: Abundant or scarce? (That would depend on just how ‘natural’ we think human resources are), 18 Sep 2014

Livestock options to meet development goals: ILRI side event at Tropentag Conference in Prague, 17 Sep

ILRI@tropentag 2014: Livestock-based options for sustainable food and nutritional security and healthy lives, 16 Sep 2014

The International Livestock Research Institute turns 40–Join us at an ILRI@40 event!, 4 July 2014





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