Bringing Indigenous Knowledge of the People of Rural Africa into the Academy:

On March 11, ten shivering African women scientists arrived at Penn State. These women are Feed the Future Fellows that were selected to take part in the USDA-Borlaug Global Food Security program funded by the U.S. Agency for International Development to expand the pool of food security professionals in Africa. Each of the women has been assigned a Penn State faculty mentor who is conducting research related to the Fellow?s field of professional interest. Soon after their arrival, the women viewed a tape of the recent ICIK seminar on medicinal mushrooms in Ethiopia to observe how local knowledge of indigenous plants can stimulate a very exciting academic research project. This experience led to the scheduling of an ICIK seminar in which Borlaug Feed the Future Fellows from five African countries will share an aspect of indigenous knowledge they would like to investigate further when they return home.