Science at work 2 August 2023
French West Indies, French Guiana and Caribbean
CIRAD works with its partners in the agricultural sector and the help of the local authorities in Guadeloupe, Martinique and French Guiana, and French government services and the EU, to boost the region's scientific influence in the fields of agriculture (banana, sugarcane, pineapple, citrus fruits and diversification sectors), health and the environment.
Its research helps the territories concerned to respond to issues such as food security, climate change, conservation, sustainable development and agricultural employment.
Four research topics
To this end, its operations focus on four main topics:
- Agroecological transitions for sustainable, local food systems:
Global change (climate, health, globalized markets, etc.), means we need to invent ecological ways of producing and using agricultural products, within profitable systems that safeguard environmental and consumer health.
- Tropical crop genetic resource preservation, characterization and promotion:
By managing and making use of food crop biological resource centres (BRCs), CIRAD can develop and assess hybrid varieties more resilient to pests and disease and environmental constraints, and roll them out within agroecological cropping systems.
- Emerging diseases and global health, an integrated approach to plant, animal, human and ecosystem health: Mopnitoring, preventing and controlling diseases means understanding a set of complex interactions (human diseases and wildlife reservoirs, agricultural practices and food chains, etc.). The aim is to address ecosystem protection, agricultural practices and veterinary and human health at the same time.
- Tropical rainforest ecology and forest resource use:
By characterizing and modelling forest dynamics and the ecosystem services those forests provide, we aim to strike compromises in order to manage forest resources sustainably.
Emblematic projects and platforms in partnership for research and training
CIRAD's research projects in the Caribbean are supported by structural funding (ERDF, EAFRD) and research funding from the EU, Agence Française de Développement, local authorities in Guadeloupe, French Guiana and Martinique, and the French government. This map shows a selection of current projects in the French West Indies-French Guiana and the Caribbean. The dots show the countries in which CIRAD and its partners work. They do not show specific sites.
- 141 permanent staff members
- 60 interns and PhD students
- 50 partners
- 20 hours of training provided per year
- 140 publications per year
Active agricultural science cooperation in the Caribbean
The main regional networks and projects led by CIRAD in the Caribbean centre on the One Health approach (animal, plant and human health) and agroecology (as the environmental component of One Health). Livestock production and fruit, market garden and food (roots and tubers and plantain banana) crops are the target fields. This scientific and technical cooperation, which CIRAD leads on a Caribbean-wide scale from the local French departments and regions, was prompted by demand from our French, European and regional partners. It also concerns South America, involving CIRAD researchers based there and in French Guiana.
- To foster scientific and technical exchanges by associating agricultural players
- To conduct training and build capacity
- To implement joint research programmes
- To promote and roll out project results throughout the sub-region
Examples of regional cooperation projects:
Co-building knowledge and consolidating quality markets for the products of the socio-biodiversity in the Amazon
The project is helping players in the açai (Euterpe oleracea Mart.) supply chain to promote this specific resource and associated local know-how, develop agroecological practices and consolidate quality markets, to drive an innovative economic dynamic.