Tuesday, 5 March 2013

Women gaining momentum: Take a moment to learn more about what IRRI women are doing

Special International Women's Day 2013 Seminars@ IRRI

Join us in the next IRRI (Thursday) Seminar, organized by HRS, to start the celebration for International Women’s Day at IRRI. Three IRRI women of science will share their insights into their work.

Maria Celeste Banaticla-Hilario (GRC)
Maria Theresa Castro (SSD)
Ando Radanielson (CESD)

Exploring the diversity of Asian wild rice

By Maria Celeste Banaticla-Hilario
Assistant scientist
T.T. Chang Genetic Resources Center, IRRI

The non-cultivated species of the genus Oryza can provide a genetic arsenal of useful traits for improving the widely cultivated and consumed Asian rice (O. sativa). The diversity of these valuable plant resources must be well understood to ensure their effective in- and ex-situ conservation.

Celeste will present a portion of her thesis that delved into the morphological and genetic  variations within and among the three species of Oryza series Sativae in Asia and the Pacific—O. meridionalis, O. nivara, and O. rufipogon. She will also discuss the implications of the research results for wild rice conservation.

Climate change, food security systems, livelihood, and gender roles in rice-based farming systems

By Maria Theresa Castro
Gender Team, Social Sciences Division, IRRI

Women are said to be the most vulnerable during extreme climate variability, but they can also be the most capable of driving change and adapting to certain situations within a society or community. To better understand the perception of men and women on changing climate or extreme climate variability (ECV) and to find out the effects of ECVs on the community and farm households, focus group discussions and household surveys were conducted in in selected sites that are prone to environmental stress.

(From a study by Thelma Paris and Maria Theresa Castro, both of SSD, IRRI; with other NARES partners and collaborators.)

Modeling salinity effect on rice plant biomass
By Ando Radanielson
Postdoctoral fellow
Crop Modeling Team, CESD, IRRI

The rice crop model ORYZA2000 was developed almost 20 years ago. It was conceived to integrate available knowledge developed at IRRI in lowland rice. Improvements have been made to adapt the model to current and foreseen environmental constraints to rice production. The model is currently being improved to account for abiotic stresses; Ando's work focuses on improvements pertaining to salt stress. She will discuss how this is being done and its progress, and will share perspectives in model application in developing sustainable crop management practices for salt-affected rice areas.

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