All posts in tag: agriculture

David Zilberman Training environmental leaders

This summer, the 14th cohort of the Beahrs Environmental Leadership Program graduated. The Beahrs ELP summer program brings mid-career professionals to Berkeley for professional training and I was fortunate enough to be the co-director of the program, alongside Dean Keith Gilless.

When Dick Beahrs gave us the means to start the … More >

David Zilberman Economics in the land of lakes, caves, and castles

Slovenia is a small Slavic nation in the middle of Europe, between Latin and Germanic countries (Italy and Austria), and is an embodiment of all three. It has been under Austrian rule for 1000 years, and was freed by Napoleon, who is considered a hero (they have a nice statue … More >

David Zilberman God helps those who help themselves

I grew up in a religious family but I am not particularly religious. I believe that there is (are) some Supreme Being(s) above us, but I consider the religious narrative and beliefs of organized religion to be fiction; albeit fiction with many useful lessons, but nevertheless, fiction.

One of my favorite … More >

David Zilberman On life and cocoa in the Ivory Coast

This week I returned from my fourth trip to Africa, this time to the Ivory Coast (Cote d’Ivoire, but I gave up on pronouncing it…). I went for a project of ICARF and Mars Chocolate, aiming to understand how to improve cocoa productivity there, but I learned much more about … More >

David Zilberman In praise of this year’s World Food Prize Laureates

We recently learned that the 2013 World Food Prize was awarded to three biotechnology scientists, Marc Van Montagu of Belgium, and Mary-Dell Chilton and Robert T. Fraley of the United States, for developing methods of inserting genes from various organisms to plant cells. I find this recognition to be justified … More >

David Zilberman The GMO labeling debate continued: It’s about the ‘benchmark’

I was amazed by the response to my previous post – and I will try address some of the main points.

I found three main themes repeating through the comments. First, it is clear that there are many people who are concerned about the side effects of GMOs and don’t trust … More >

David Zilberman Why labeling of GMOs is actually bad for people and the environment

On November 6th, California voters will be asked to vote on a proposition about labeling of genetically modified (GM) products. On the surface this seems quite reasonable: people should have information about what they consume. In my view, labeling requirements are appropriate when there is undisputed scientific evidence that a … More >

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