Home-grown nutrition research

first_imgPupils eat food donated by World FoodProgram (WFP) in a classroom in Orango Island, Guinea-Bissau. According to the WFP, intellectual levels rise when children are fed properly.(Image: Manoocher Deghati, Irin Photo) MEDIA CONTACTS • Ben ParkerDirector, Irin News+254 733 860082 RELATED ARTICLES • Africa: serious about food• Development goals on track • Ethiopian wins World Food Prize• SA at front line of GM research • Quality inputs for Kenya’s farmersSource: Irin NewsEarlier in April a group of international academic institutions and an EU-backed NGO launched Sustainable Nutrition Research for Africa in the Years to come, or Sunray, to develop a nutrition agenda for Africa, with specific emphasis on the 34 sub-Saharan countries.“We want to make sure nutrition interventions in the next 10-15 years – when Africa faces potential environmental changes which will impact on nutrition – are sustainable, driven by African countries, and their priorities are not pre-defined by donors,” said researcher Carl Lachat of the Belgium-based Institute for Tropical Medicine, one of the participating institutions.A recent study by the International Food Policy Research Institute, a US-based think-tank, found that in another two decades the effect of climate change on food production could drive child malnutrition up by 20%.The two-year Sunray project has invited proposals for working papers from African researchers on a number of relevant topics.They include the relationship between nutrition and climate change; the influence of rising food prices; the future availability of water; social dynamics in households, and the effect of rapid urbanisation, among other themes in order to identify the specific research needs for nutrition in these areas.Research in AfricaProposals for working papers are under review by academics at four universities in sub-Saharan Africa: North-West University in South Africa; Sokoine University in Tanzania; the University of Abomey-Calavi in Benin; and Makerere University in Uganda.“South Africa plays in a different league in terms of research when compared to the rest of Africa, but our research is more influenced by Western concepts, so if you are to look at good home-grown research pertaining to local foodstuffs, Nigeria and Kenya are a lot more advanced,” said Prof Annamarie Kruger, director of the Africa Unit for Transdisciplinary Health Research at North-West University’s Potchefstroom campus.Kruger added that the project gave African researchers the attractive opportunity to develop interventions suited for their own conditions, meaning that they would have a say in the agenda.“We also know the gaps that need to be addressed,” she said. “It is not like we are doing research for European driven projects.”Lachat pointed out that the backing of the EU meant rich countries are calling for African involvement in setting the priorities for nutrition research and funding.Collaborative effortWith the deadline for proposals just passed, the universities are now assessing the submissions. The first of a series of workshops with the authors will take place later in 2011.Ahead of the workshops, the collaborating institutions intend holding discussions with nutritionists, researchers, businesspeople in the food sector, and policy makers in seven African countries – Benin, Mozambique, Rwanda, South Africa, Uganda, Togo and Tanzania.Lachat said they realised that political backing was critical to ensure the research made the journey from paper to the real world, so “we are involving African political leaders in the initiative.”The project will produce a roadmap document summarising research priorities, strengths and gaps, resource requirements, opportunities for linkage and support between African and Northern institutions, or synergies between existing initiatives and research in other sectors.Only nine of the 46 countries in sub-Saharan Africa are on track to achieve the UN Millennium Development Goal to eradicate extreme poverty and hunger by 2015.Pupils eat food donated by WFP in a classroom in Eva Orango school in Orango Island of Bijago Archipelago in Guinea-Bissau Feburary 2008. According to World Food Program (WFP) intellectual levels rise when children are fed properly.© Manoocher Deghati/IRINlast_img read more

CNN.com Gets a Radical Redesign

first_imgWhy Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic… More Emphasis on Video – Including Videos from TEDAt today’s press event, CNN also stressed that the new site will integrate more of its TV product. Instead of keeping video and text separate, the new CNN.com will bring the two together. 50% of CNN’s users already watch both the video and read the story, so bringing the two closer together is a smart move for CNN. CNN also announced a partnership with TED, which will bring TED videos to a completely new audience.NewsPulse The new homepage will also have a new feature called ‘NewsPulse.’ This will allow users to reorganize news stories by correspondent, subject, or keyword. Today’s press event was low on specifics, but this looks like a good way to personalize CNN’s homepage and to find interesting content on the site.Similarity to CNN GoCNN also recently launched CNN Go, which focuses on news for the Asian market and also has a more magazine-like layout. What About the Competition?We have also heard that MSNBC will soon launch a redesign of its own. While we aren’t aware of any specifics yet, the new MSNBC will focus on adding value to news wire stories by bringing together more material from NBC’s affiliates and a larger focus on interactive elements designed specifically for MSNBC. According to CNN’s General Manager of CNN.com Kenneth Estenson, CNN.com currently gets about 1.7 billion page views and 100 million video views every month. In total the CNN homepage has been called up over 120 billion times since its first iteration in 1996.CNN clearly put a lot of thought into this redesign. As William Hsu, CNN’s VP for News Advertising Sales for Asia Pacific told Exchange4media.com earlier this week, the CNN team “did a lot of research, biometric research, in Europe” (update: a CNN spokesperson just told us that this study was done independent of the site redesign). According to Hsu, these studies showed that very few users ever went beyond the current homepage. Because of this, the new homepage will show far more content but will also make it easier for readers to navigate the site. Related Posts CNN.com, one of the top 25 websites in the US, just announced a radical redesign of its service at a press event in New York City. The new CNN.com homepage will be split up into three parts. On the left, CNN will now highlight breaking news stories, the middle section will feature older stories and a ‘highlights’ section, and the right sidebar will be customizable with personalized weather and sports scores. Right beneath the fold, the new CNN will feature a list of ‘editor’s choice’ stories – similar to the NYTimes’s ‘Inside NYTimes.com’ section. The new site will go live next Monday. frederic lardinoiscenter_img A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai… Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hosting Tags:#news#NYT#web 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Marketlast_img read more

1 killed in police firing as violence continues in West Bengal

first_imgAt least one person was killed and several others injured in firing in the Bhatpara-Kakinara area of North 24 Paraganas, about 30 km from Kolkata. The deceased was identified as Dharamveer Shaw.While the police confirmed the death of Mr. Shaw, a street food vendor, locals said one more person was killed, a claim that could not be confirmed. At least three more civilians and a few policemen were injured.It was after a two-hour clash, during which miscreants hurled bombs at each other, that the police reached Bhatpara. They claimed that they had been attacked by the locals and “vehicles were vandalised”. However, one person, who claimed to be an uncle of Mr. Shaw, said that “the police opened fire without any provocation and killed his nephew.” His body could be seen lying in a pool of blood, while the bullet that presumably hit him pierced the shutter of a shop. A police officer said they had not “fired and killed civilians.”The area, predominantly inhabited by migrant workers from Bihar, Jharkhand and Uttar Pradesh, witnessed sporadic violence following the election result, which saw BJP leader Arjun Singh defeating Dinesh Trivedi of Trinamool Congress. The locals described various incidents — which were also communal — caused by the turf war between the Trinamool and the BJP.The State government has decided to set up a new police station in Bhatpara, and it was supposed to be inaugurated on Thursday. But the inauguration was postponed following the violence. Additional Director-General of Police (Barrackpore Police Commissionerate) Sanjay Singh reached the area with a huge force. The Rapid Action Force was also deployed. Director-General of Police Virendra also reached there and held meetings with officials.Home Secretary Alapan Banerjee said Section 144 had been imposed. “Section 144 has been imposed in Bhatpara, Jagaddal and adjacent areas. Law and order will be restored and the situation will be normalised,” Mr. Banerjee said.BJP leader Kailash Vijayvargiya said the party was sending a team of MPs to Bhatpara. “It is a clear case of the police opening fire and killing an innocent person. [Chief Minister] Mamata Banerjee has lost mental balance and the State government has failed to control the situation despite continuing violence in the area for quite some time,” he said. He said a team of BJP MPs would visit Bhatpara on Friday. Local MP Arjun Singh said the police “fired and killed Shaw from a close range.”TMC leader Tapas Ray said the BJP was “instigating such violence to destabilise the TMC government.” “The TMC came to power with popular mandate and still has a majority in the Assembly. But it is routinely disturbed by the Central government. This violence is an attempt of the Centre to dislodge the State government,” Mr. Ray said.last_img read more