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USAID’s Soybean Innovation Lab Names Advisory BoardUniversity of Illinois Extension News – June 3, 2015


USAID’s Soybean Innovation Lab Names Advisory Board

The Soybean Innovation Lab (SIL) at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign provides researchers, extension personnel, the private sector, NGOs, and funders operating across the entire value chain the critical information needed for successful soybean development and scaling.

“A vital component of the SIL multidisciplinary and multi-institutional team involves our advisory board, as they ensure that our efforts are strategic, efficacious, and appropriately implemented,” said the program’s principal investigator Peter Goldsmith. “We are fortunate to be able to draw on their rich experience in international development – humanitarian, government, and private sector – to provide insight, guidance, and expertise to the United States and African researchers involved in the program.”

Current SIL advisory board members are: 

* Eberson Calvo, Chief Executive Officer, Tropical Improvement and Genetics

* Ken Dashiell, Deputy Director, General for Partnerships and Capacity Building, International Institute for Tropical Agriculture

* Brady Deaton, Former Chancellor, University of Missouri

* Robert Easter, Former President, University of Illinois

* Daniel Gustafson, Deputy Director, Operations, Food and Agricultural Organization

Mark Keenum, President, Mississippi State University

* Earl Kellogg, Senior Fellow, Association of Public and Land Grant Universities

* Marc Linit, Associate Dean for Research and Extension, College of Agriculture, Food and Natural Resources, University of Missouri

* Paul Rose, Owner, Sossi Company, Kenya

* Abdulai Salifu, Director General, Council for Scientific and Industrial Research, Ghana

The U.S. Agency for International Development created the Feed the Future Innovation Lab for Soybean Value Chain Research at the U of I. The program spans five years and is implementing efforts in Ghana, Mozambique, Ethiopia, Zambia, and Malawi. 

Recognizing that soybean is a commercial, non-staple and non-native crop, the lab’s research and capacity building delves into issues facing the entire value chain of soybean production in the tropics. The scope of the project includes: plant breeding, varietal testing, agronomics, environmental impact, input acquisition and application, seed supply-chain management, the socioeconomics of small and medium holders, gender roles as they relate to soybean production and marketing, and livestock and human utilization.

For more information, visit or @TropicalSoyLab on Twitter. 

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