International Rice Research Institute Leader at U of A for Global Food Seminar Series

Robert Zeigler of the International Rice Research Institute
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Robert Zeigler of the International Rice Research Institute

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – Robert Zeigler, a plant pathologist and the director general of the International Rice Research Institute in the Philippines, is the featured speaker for this year’s first Global Food Opportunities seminar series in the Dale Bumpers College of Agricultural, Food and Life Sciences at the University of Arkansas.

Zeigler will speak at 2 p.m. on Wednesday, Sept. 3, in Hembree Auditorium, which is in the AFLS Building. The seminar is open to all U of A students, faculty and staff, as well as the general public. Zeigler’s visit is co-hosted by the Bumpers College International Programs Office and the Department of Plant Pathology. The Global Food Opportunities series exposes students to international experiences and opportunities to expand career and academic options.

Zeigler’s presentation is titled “Rice Science: A Powerful Weapon in the War Against Hunger and Poverty.” The program also includes presentations on global experiences by students Ashley Rodman and Harry Wilmoth.

A question and answer session will follow each presentation.

Zeigler has more than 30 years of experience in agricultural research in the developing world. He has worked in Congo, Burundi, South American and Asia, and has been director general of the International Rice Research Institute since 2005.

Ziegler is a member of the Golden Rice Humanitarian Board and chairman of the board of directors of The Association of International Agricultural Research Centers. He earned his doctorate in plant pathology from Cornell University, his master’s in botany from Oregon State University and his bachelor’s in biological sciences from the University of Illinois.

After completing his undergraduate work in 1972, Ziegler joined the Peace Corps and spent two years as a science teacher in the Democratic Republic of Congo in Africa. He has also worked as a research associate at the International Center for Tropical Agriculture in Colombia, as a technical adviser at the Institut des Sciences Agronomiques du Burundi in Burundi and as director of the Plant Biotechnology Center at Kansas State University.

Previous speakers in the Global Food Opportunities seminar series include Jose Carreia de Simas, who leads the product development team in the research and development area of Elanco Animal Health; and Glenn Shinn, a senior partner at Global Consulting Solutions and Borlaug Senior Scientist in international agricultural development.


Leslie Edgar, associate professor
Director of Bumpers College International Programs

Robby Edwards, director of communications
Bumpers College


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