PROCEEDINGS OF THE CONGRESS "FOOD SECURITY, AGRICULTURE AND SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT IN THE INDIAN OCEAN" IN THE CONTEXT OF THE PROJECT EGALE (GATHERING UNIVERSITIES FOR QUALITY IN EDUCATION FED/2013/320-117), ACP-EU COOPERATION PROGRAMME IN HIGHER EDUCATION EDULINK II
An highlight event in the long time collaboration between Comoros and Italy was the scientific congress on “Food Security, Agriculture and Sustainable Development in the Indian Ocean”, held on April 6-7, 2017 in Moroni. The scientific committee of the conference was composed by Prof. Cristina Giacoma (University of Turin, Department of Life Sciences and Biological Systems, Italy), Prof. Gabriele L. Beccaro (University of Turin, Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Food Science, Italy), Prof. Harilala Andriamaniraka (Ecole Supérieure des Sciences Agronomiques, University of Antananarivo, Madagascar), Prof. Kamaliddine Afraitane (Faculté de Sciences et Techniques, University of Comoros, Comoros Islands), and Prof. Eustache Miasa (Institut Supérieur des Sciences, Environnement, et Développement Durable, University of Toamasina, Madagascar).
The conference was organized and financed in the frame of the project EGALE (“Gathering Universities for Quality in Education”, ACP-EU Cooperation Programme in Higher Education EDULINK II, FED/2013/320-117). EGALE aimed at supporting sustainable rural development in Madagascar and Comoros to achieve a good level of food security by the development of innovative tools for a high quality educational offer. In particular, EGALE focused on improving the capacity of the participant countries at both administrative and academic levels as well as improving their quality and competitiveness at international level and strengthening the profile of administrative and academic staff, with a particular focus on women participation.
About a hundred people from Madagascar, Comoros and Italy attended the conference. Oral presentations dealt with three main topics: “Agroforestry and food security”, “Biodiversity conservation and valorization”, and “Environmental education, scientific dissemination and internationalization of research”.
The five PhD students who attended the University of Torino thanks to a grant by the EGALE project attended the meeting and presented their results. Dr. Soifoini Toilibou (University of Comoros) presented a paper on the phytochemical and nutritional characterization of Artocarpusaltilis (Parkinson) fruits, an important local resource for food security in Comoros Islands, while dr. Rakotoniaina Naivonirina Ernest (University of Antananarivo) showed the results on phytochemical characterization of Chrysophyllum boivinianum, a medicinal plant used by local population in Madagascar. Dr. Solo Noè Renè (University of Toamasina) presented the results on the effects of seasonal climatic variations on phenology of litchi (Litchi chinensis Sonn.) in Madagascar.
Some papers showed advances on biodiversity conservation and ecology of natural resources in Madagascar and Comoros, as presented by dr. Bakri Nadhurou, dr. Andriamifaliharimanana Rado Alain, dr. Isidoro Riondato and dr. Torti Valeria. Other presentations highlighted as the international collaboration established in these years between the Indian Ocean Countries and Italy could be very important to improve scientific capacity building and quality in research and education of both, as highlighted by dr. Riondato Isidoro, dr. Rasamimanana Hantanirina, dr. Awardine Mohamed, and dr. Andriantsilavo Parsonnette Solomalala in their researches.The 15 Comoran students who graduated in Ethology - “International Master in Sustainable Biodiversity Management and Conservation”, the 2 years Master Joint title between the University of Torino and the University of Comoro presented the posters (reported in this issue) with the main results obtained by their master thesis work.