Written by Ekta Patel
Dr Jonathan Wadsworth, a livestock scientist by training, has spent most of his career working to develop and disseminate innovative agricultural technologies in low and middle-income countries through vocational education and training, research, extension and technology transfer. He has designed and implemented agriculture for research development projects across the globe and as Senior Agricultural Research Advisor of DFID was closely engaged with CGIAR funding and reform. As Executive Secretary of the CGIAR Fund Council at the World Bank, he was fully immersed in CGIAR governance and continues to be so in his current role as Lead Agriculture Specialist at the World Bank Global Agriculture Practice. Jonathan shares the enthusiasm of ILRI in their leadership of the newly established CGIAR AMR hub and sees it as an excellent opportunity to make real progress on addressing a most ‘wicked’ of global problems. Watch his full video interview here.
What are the major challenges of Antimicrobial Resistance?
The challenges of Antimicrobial Resistance are related to what happens if we don’t get AMR under control. According to modelling exercises, almost 30 million people will go back into chronic poverty which will knock off the Sustainable Development Goal (SDGs) on poverty. The economic climate of the worlds GDP will be knocked off, and not like the 2008 crisis which was a single event, but rather as a continuous process. AMR needs to be brought into control or the losses will continue and it will get worse. Important issues to take into account are those of economic, poverty and human suffering. Families will suffer through avoidable deaths that will increase because of a problem we brought on ourselves through misuse of the antimicrobial drugs.
Why is the CGIAR AMR hub important?
Antimicrobial resistance is a real complex and very wicked problem requiring many different disciplines to work together. The benefits of the CGIAR AMR hub are fundamental in bringing together different disciplines to work together on a real complex and a very wicked problem. Not only do we need scientific disciplines from veterinary providers, health or environmental aspects but we also require a great deal of social science involvement as it has to do with changing behaviour of farmers, or the way people think of antimicrobials and how they use antimicrobials. Antimicrobials are a precious resource that we risk squandering as humanity if we don’t look after them.
AMR hub can bring together the different sciences to work together is not a one health approach but a super one health approach which brings different aspects of hard science and social science and together. This will bring about the implementation of interventions to bring AMR under control and contact-specific for different countries. It has to do with different cultural and social factors, the way people think and use AMR will be fundamental in the way they are used more efficiently and effectively without bringing about more resistance.
Why was it important to attend this workshop?
AMR is an issue that greatly concerns the World Bank over the last year several studies have been published on modelling and the impacts of AMR. The World Bank is a great supporter of the CGAIR and a big client of CGIAR research outputs and products so it was important to show support to be here and discuss with others on how we can support this initiative going forward. I also welcome the opportunity to visit any of the CGIAR centers.