Special Event looks at Global Food Security

Topic:  Global Food SecurityWinkelmann

Speaker:  Dr. Donald Winkelmann, former Director of the International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center (CIMMYT), and Chair of CGIAR*’s Technical Advisory Committee 

Location:  Hosted at the Forum, Santa Fe University of Art and Design, 1600 St. Michael’s Drive


Don Winkelman grew up in an agricultural area in Nebraska. Over his first 35 years he enjoyed a stretch of parenting, of school, of graduate work, of  teaching, of research.  Among major themes he and his family lived in Mexico overseeing a Ford Foundation program aimed at reshaping graduate study in agricultural economics in Mexico.  In 1972 he joined the International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center (CIMMYT) – one of the CGIAR*’s Green Revolution research centers, the home of Nobel Laureate Norman Borlaug, headquartered in Mexico—to initiate work in economics in support of that in plant breeding and agronomy.

A hallmark of the work being done by CIMMYT was that it relied on the participation of developing country agriculturalists–when everybody won, everybody got a prize.

In mid 1980’s Winkelmann became CIMMYT’s Director. At the time the Center had over 100 Ph.D. professionals and staff from 35 countries. Major challenges were the Center’s own resource allocations and the working relations with national programs. In 1995 he was named Chair of the CGIAR’s Technical Advisory Committee whose challenge was to review the science and the resource allocations in each of the then 15 international centers (see CGIAR).

Having moved to Santa Fe in the mid-‘90’s he became a member of Santa Fe’s CIR. In the early 2000’s he was named a Woodrow Wilson Visiting Fellow. He maintains an abiding interest in agriculture’s role in alleviating poverty in developing countries.

* CGIAR was previously known as the “Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research.  In 2008 the organization underwent a major transformation. To reflect this and yet retain their roots, they are now known simply as CGIAR.