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September 24, 2017

016 Biotechnology in Uganda; Reflections on a Public Discussion

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This week features two discussions with fellows serving in the Global Leadership Program of the Cornell Alliance for Science.  The first part is a discussion with Nassib Mugwanya, Outreach Leader for the Ugandan Biosciences Information Center.  He discusses the state of biotech solutions in Uganda, both in terms of critical needs and the current pipeline.  The second part is a discussion about the public Ask Me Anything event that was held near the university where I served as a panelist.  Jayson Merkley is another Fellow in the program.  We discuss the surprises and the lessons learned in the event.

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4 Comments on 016 Biotechnology in Uganda; Reflections on a Public Discussion

  1. This was an excellent podcast, Kevin. Thanks so much to Nassib for sharing his insights and his first-hand account of the issues with banana and cassava growing and consumption in Uganda.

    This piece in the NYT from years ago haunted me: http://www.nytimes.com/2010/06/01/science/01cassava.html?_r=0

    But his hilarious take on what does Monsanto want with cassava? Nothing… made me chuckle as I was listening.

    And then to hear Jayson talk about the list of bullet points that the GMO haters organized to send people to disrupt the meeting with…wow. I keep trying to make the point that it’s not just that people are confused. It’s that they are being actively confused and misled that’s the real problem, and that’s why we can have nice things like public discussions.

    Great to hear from both of these Fellows in the program. Seriously. I’ll be thinking about this all week now.

  2. This reminds me of a quote I heard a few years ago at one of the professional conferences I was attending, “It is disingenuous for well-fed westerners to block [GMO] technology from the people who need it most”. This podcast really drives that point home.

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