The IRD is present in most countries affected by desertification
Recently, the Institute is involved with its African partners (Panafrican Agency of the Great Green Wall - PAGGW) and Brazilian (Centre for Management and Strategic Studies - CGEE and National Council for Scientific and Technological Development - CNPq) in a program tripartite research devoted to the fight against desertification in l Africa. A cooperation South-South co-funded by Brazil, Africa and France, this research program aims in structuring a scientific support community on the fight against desertification in Africa, strengthen the scientific capabilities of this continent and strengthen the link between science and society, to contribute to sustainable management of arid and semi-arid Africa.
Similarly, in response to the phenomenon of deforestation in the Sahel, which leads to soil degradation and desertification almost inexorable, eleven African countries have initiated in 2005 a continent-wide project led by the African Union: the Great Green Wall. Like a resistance line to counter the advance of the desert, this green wall 15 km wide will be built from Dakar to Djibouti, is 7000 km long. For its implementation, a committee of specialists trees and arid environments, including scientists from the IRD, was requested. They must determine the most appropriate techniques and choose the most suitable for the Sahelian context species (drought tolerance, ability to grow in nutrient deficient soils, restoration of fertility, etc..) to optimize performance reforestation.
The IRD: research, training and innovation in partnership
The IRD is a French research organisation that, together with its southern partners, addresses international development issues. To improve sanitary conditions, understanding the evolution of society, preserving the environment and resources are the pillars of its work with a view to achieving the millenium development objectives.
As a French science and technology establishment, the IRD is under the joint supervision of the Ministries of Research and Foreign Affairs. It operates internationally from its headquarters in Marseille, and two metropolitan centres of Montpellier and Bondy.
Thanks to its collaborative activities in research, education and innovation, it works in more than fifty countries in Africa, around the Mediterranean, in Asia, Latin America and overseas. Based on interdisciplinarity, the projects conducted jointly handle issues crucial for the South: tropical diseases and civilisation, relationships between health and environment, climate change, water resources, food security, tropical and Mediterranean ecosystems, natural hazards, poverty, vulnerability and social inequality, migration, changes in the labour market.
Now embedded within the IRD, the agency for inter-institutional development research is a force of scientific mobilisation that aims to unite the French research organisations and universities to act together with the Southern countries.