RTB Program Advisory Committee gets underway

RTB can now count on its Program Advisory Committee (PAC) to help optimize the impact of its research for development. The PAC will guide RTB’s overall program development and partnering strategies. It is made up of six independent scientists and development experts who are appointed by the RTB Steering Committee with RTB Director Graham Thiele as Secretary.

PAC members are selected for their competencies in gender, partnerships, evaluation and theory of change, capacity strengthening and ‘cutting edge’ science. They are expected to provide independent advice to the Lead Center’s Board of Trustees and to the RTB Management Committee on the quality and relevance of the research, priority setting, strategic allocation of resources and need for external reviews.

On April 4th the PAC held its first introductory meeting and committee members were warmly welcomed by Barbara Wells, Director General at the International Potato Center (CIP) and Chair of the RTB Steering Committee.

The first activity of PAC will be to provide feedback on the Extension Proposal that RTB, along with other Research Programs, should submit to the CGIAR Consortium on April 25th, and which is a refresh on current thinking.

RTB governance


The six members, who were appointed for an initial three years, are:

  •  Alfredo Augusto Cunha Alves, Coordinator of Technical Cooperation at EMBRAPA, Brazil
  • Rupert Best, Senior Technical Advisor – Agriculture and Environment at Catholic Relief Services, Colombia
  • Helen Hambly Odame, Associate Professor of Capacity Development and Extension in the School of Environmental Design and Rural Development at the University of Guelph in Ontario, Canada
  • Yvonne Pinto, Director of Agricultural Learning and Impacts Network (ALINe) at Firetail Limited, UK
  • Dunstan Spencer, Senior Partner with Enterprise Development Services Ltd, Sierra Leone
  • Eugene Terry, Senior Technical Adviser of TransFarm Africa, USA