Hub for West Africa

The DivSeek International Regional Hub for West Africa aims to bring together researchers in West Africa with a focus on the genetic diversity analysis for pre breeding and genebank management to develop a strong network for sharing of guidelines, standards and best practices for diversity analyses and data management through a focus on key staple crops of sub-Saharan Africa including rice, maize, cassava, cowpea, yams, soybean and banana/plantain.

Co-leads: Michael Abberton, International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA); Nigeria and Marie-Noelle Ndjiondjop, AfricaRice, Cote d’Ivoire

2021 update on Activities:
  • Generated a list of researchers in Francophone and Anglophone countries of West Africa to act as the initial participants for awareness raising of DivSeek.
  • Studies on the genetic diversity and potential for pre breeding of international and national collections of key staple crops of sub-Saharan Africa – being carried out at Africa Rice, ICRISAT and IITA with NARS. This work is ongoing and could provide the basis for further projects and skilled transfer to NARS
  • A network for partnership and capacity development – to be achieved through:
    • Aiming to circulate an initial ‘e newsletter’ to all on the list that will raise awareness and allow us to create a database of interested participants, their projects and capacity development needs
  • Working with DivSeek International Network to arrange a webinar (or short series) on molecular characterization of major crops aimed at West African institutions and researchers