BBSRC took a leading role in the organisation of this year's 'Tetrapartite' meeting, which took place from 2 to 5 June 2013.
Tetrapartite is an annual meeting of the heads of agricultural science and policy from France, USA, Canada and the UK. Partner nations host the meeting in rotation, and this year the privilege fell to BBSRC, which organised the meeting on behalf of the other UK partners, Defra, DFID, and the Scottish Government.
The meeting took place in Norwich, a major UK agriscience hub, and home to several to world-leading research centres located at the Norwich Research Park. It also included time in Cambridge at the new Sainsbury Laboratory and the NIAB Innovation Farm.
BBSRC used the opportunity to host a programme around two major themes: sustainable intensification and connecting domestic agricultural science to international development goals.
This year's themes, as suggested by BBSRC, were agreed upon because of the increasing importance of connecting agricultural research to global food security and other important activities, such as global biofuel production. Although Tetrapartite meetings are informal by tradition they provide a valuable opportunity for developing new partnerships, new ways of working and identifying shared goals. Next year's meeting will be hosted in Canada.
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Funded by Government, and with an annual budget of around £500M (2012-2013), we support research and training in universities and strategically funded institutes. BBSRC research and the people we fund are helping society to meet major challenges, including food security, green energy and healthier, longer lives. Our investments underpin important UK economic sectors, such as farming, food, industrial biotechnology and pharmaceuticals.