The World Food Forum 2024: Good food for all, for today and tomorrow.

WFF Announces Second Cohort of the Young Scientists Group

WFF Announces Second Cohort of the Young Scientists Group

The World Food Forum (WFF) is delighted to announce the second cohort of the Young Scientists Group (YSG) after the successful launch of the first cohort in 2022. This two-year programme will run from 2023 to 2025.

The YSG aims to provide the WFF with scientific evidence and technical knowledge necessary for the implementation of its initiatives. The group is responsible for creating a biannual WFF Young Scientists report on specific policy issues that concern youth related to the transformation of agrifood systems.

Leveraging the areas of expertise of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), and engaging with partners and relevant academic networks, the YSG plays a critical role in providing the WFF with necessary science-based direction, and allows for formal scientific opinions related to documents, statements or action-oriented proposals generated by the participating youth.

The Group will support the formalization and institutionalization of the WFF, with a particular focus on youth action, innovation and education. Its composition will align with the FAO Four Betters - Better Production, Better Life, Better Environment, and Better Nutrition -; and mirror scientific areas relevant to agrifood systems transformation to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

The 2023 YSG cohort is composed of 16 young scientists from all over the world:

  • Ambrogio Zanzi – Italy
  • Ana Luiza Domingos – Brazil
  • Aasma Sharma – Nepal
  • Ayaz Mukarram Shaikh – India
  • Celia Burgaz – Spain
  • Cherie Russell – Australia
  • Ebba Engström – Sweden
  • Gideon Iheme – Nigeria
  • Isnawati Hidayah – Indonesia
  • Haiteng Li – China
  • Margaret Hegwood – United States of America
  • Mechak Gbaguidi – Benin
  • Ram Chandra Neupane – Nepal
  • Ramoudane Orou Sannou – Benin
  • Sofia Cavalleri – Italy
  • Tarini Gupta – India

The applicants were selected after going through a thorough review process undertaken by a diverse and inclusive Selection Committee composed of scientific experts.

The applicants were selected after going through a thorough review process, composed by two rounds of selection. In the initial round, each complete and eligible application was evaluated by two expert reviewers. Scores from these assessments were reviewed to form a shortlist of top-scoring candidates, who then progressed to the second round of selection.

This process was undertaken by a diverse and inclusive selection committee composed of scientific experts. The committee worked on a voluntary basis, and was formed by 10 members who helped in the selection of the YSG.

Throughout both selection rounds, candidates were evaluated based on a set of scoring guidelines, including academic and professional excellence, sensitivity to inter and transdisciplinary research, leadership and ability to work in a team, science and communication skills, personal engagement, languages spoken, creativity and proactivity.

Aligned with the WFF’s core values, all selection processes also aim to ensure gender, regional and disciplinary balance. The WFF wishes to thank all the members of the Committee for their hard work in identifying the next YSG Cohort:

  • Prof. Dr. Carl Lachat – Department of Food Technology, Safety and Health, Ghent University, Belgium
  • Associate Professor Dr. Hynek Roubík – Group leader of Biogas Research Team, Faculty of Tropical AgriSciences, Czech University of Life Sciences Prague, Czechia
  • Martín del Valle, PhD (c) – Global Academy of Agriculture and Food Security, The University of Edinburgh
  • Dr. Chian-Wen Chan – Founder of Pan-Gaea initiative, Founder of TripleVs Venture
  • Toyin S. Olowogbon, PhD. – Agricultural Economist, Centre for Sustainable Agricultural Empowerment, Nigeria
  • Angela Tay – Senior Investment Associate at AgFunder
  • Dr. Junior Miranda Scheuer, Universidad de la República, Facultad de Agronomía, Uruguay
  • Anand Nainar - Senior Lecturer, Faculty to Tropical Forestry, Universiti Malaysia Sabah
  • Fardous Mohammad Safiul Azam, P.hD. – Associate Professor, Neijiang Normal Univesity, China
  • Helena Trigueiro - Nutritionist and PhD Researcher at Ulster University