he majority of the world’s poor people depend on agricultural production to sustain their livelihoods and those of their children. The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation is one of the leading private-sector philanthropic organizations supporting agricultural development. It is actively working to put an end to the cycles of poverty and hunger by promoting the development of tools, knowledge, and policies that enhance farming skills, increase productivity and incomes, and create opportunities for small farmers and their families that enable them to escape poverty. In 2007, the foundation allocated over $600 million to agriculture–related projects. Dr. Pingali will discuss the Foundation’s priority areas for supporting agricultural development with a particular focus on agricultural policy.
Dr. Prabhu Pingali is Deputy Director and Head of Agricultural Policy and Statistics, Agriculture Development Division, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.