Press Releases

WorldFish announces Aquatic Agricultural Systems research oversight panel

WorldFish has announced the independent members of the oversight panel for the CGIAR Research Program on Aquatic Agricultural Systems. The eight-strong team will provide strategic support and guidance for the essential international research.

The newly added oversight panel members include: Jo Luck (Chair), Chris Barlow, John Kurien, Kyoko Kusakabe, John Lynam and Rekha Mehra. These six join Stephen Hall (WorldFish representative) and Barbara Schreiner (CGIAR center representative) on the panel.

“I am impressed by the experience and knowledge these individuals will bring to the Aquatic Agricultural Systems Research Program." (Ambassador Remo Gautschi, Board Chair of WorldFish, the lead center for the Program.)

The panel will provide strategic oversight and monitoring for the program, together with guidance on science quality, gender, partnerships and networking.

AAS, the CGIAR Research Program on Aquatic Agricultural Systems was launched in July 2011 to improve the lives of small aquatic agricultural communities through a program of participatory action research, while establishing effective learning and partnership arrangements that can lead to impact at multiple scales.

The program is led by WorldFish on behalf of CGIAR, together with the International Water Management Institute (IWMI) and Bioversity International. A number of development NGOs took part in the scheme's program design and implementation.

Summary biographies of oversight panel members are appended below this release.

“The board is confident the panel members will bring the necessary energy, commitment and perspective to the task of guiding the implementation of the Program so that it delivers on its goal to improve the well-being of poor and vulnerable people dependent on aquatic agricultural systems". (Ambassador Remo Gautschi.)

About WorldFish

WorldFish, a member of the CGIAR Consortium, is an international, nonprofit research organization committed to reducing poverty and hunger through fisheries and aquaculture.


CGIAR is a global agriculture research partnership for a food secure future. Its science is carried out by the 15 research centers who are members of the CGIAR Consortium in collaboration with hundreds of partner organizations.

For more information or to request for interview:

contact: Toby Johnson, Senior Media Relations Manager

Mobile tel: +60 175 124 606





Jo Luck (Chair) served as Chief Executive and President of Heifer International for 18 years (1992–2010) during which she was instrumental in significantly raising the organization’s annual budget, reach and impact.  She received the World Food Prize in 2010 in recognition of her leadership of Heifer’s work in rural development and poverty reduction.  In 2011, Jo was appointed by President Obama to serve on USAID’s Board for International Food and Agricultural Development.

Chris Barlow serves as Fisheries Program Manager for the Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research (ACIAR). Prior to joining ACIAR he was the fisheries advisor for the Mekong River Commission.

Stephen Hall is Director General of WorldFish. His previous positions include CEO of the Australian Institute of Marine Science (AIMS) and Professor of Marine Biology at Flinders University, Australia.

John Kurien was one of the founders of the International Collective in Support of Fish Workers, and is a leading proponent of the rights of fishers and other rural resource users.  He serves as an advisor to FAO on these issues and conducts research on governance in aquatic agricultural systems.

Kyoko Kusakabe is Associate Professor of gender and development Studies at the Asian Institute of Technology in Bangkok.  Her work includes a particular focus on gender and fisheries.

John Lynam served for many years on the agriculture staff of the Rockefeller Foundation and now works as an independent consultant in agriculture and rural development.  He has worked closely with many CGIAR centers and programs and was one of the authors of the new CGIAR Strategy and Results Framework.

Rekha Mehra is Director of Economic Development at the International Center for Research on Women (ICRW).  In this role she oversaw the independent scoping study of gender in the CGIAR Research Programs.

Barbara Schreiner is a water resources and management consultant from South Africa, having previously served in high level positions for the South African Government for over 10 years.  Most recently Barbara was the Deputy Director General of the Policy and Regulation Branch of the Department of Water Affairs and Forestry.  She currently sits on the board of the International Water Management Institute.