Once in a while one realizes how much change has been witnessed in only two decades. However some things never change. I came accross a nice illustration when reviewing the proceedings of the second session of the Global Conference on Agricultural Research for Development 2012 in Urugay under the ambitious title: "Delivering the change together". I was struck by the fact that many familiar faces appeared in the programme, finding much of the network that I had met while working for APAARI some twelve years ago still up and running.
Dr. Paroda, a seasoned government bureaucrat and esteemed scientist and co-founder of the green revolution, was heading the network at the time I was asked to support him in the drafting of a vision 2025. He still is. We are halfway 2025 now since the vision was drafted. And I have to say, I have not come across more perseverance in pursuing the same goals for so many years, as with Dr. Paroda. One thing has changed though. The title of his talk is only aiming at 2014 this time. We no longer have the luxury of looking 25 years ahead I presume as the world is changing at a rapid speed. However, people stay the same, and most of us do not experience massive changes in our character, ambitions and personal goals. This realization may help in dealing with some of the changes around us. Staying faithful to ourselves will help to pursue the same goals, though mechanisms to achieve them may change.
My name is Reinier van Hoffen.
Click here for a summary.
Also find the text of a lecture Dr. Achterhuis held at the 2012 Bilderberg conference.