Dr Cary Fowler

U.S. Special Envoy for Global Food Security, Office of Global Food Security

Dr Cary Fowler is perhaps best known as the “father” of the Svalbard Global Seed Vault, which UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon described as an “inspirational symbol of peace and food security for the entire humanity.” This facility provides ultimate security for more than 1 million unique crop varieties, the biological foundation of agriculture and the raw material for all future plant breeding and crop improvement efforts.  

Dr Fowler is the former Executive Director of the Global Crop Diversity Trust, an international organization cosponsored by Food and Agriculture Organization of the UN (FAO) and the Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research (CGIAR). Prior to leading the Crop Trust, he was a Professor at the Norwegian University of Life Sciences, and a senior staff member of Bioversity International. Earlier, he oversaw the UN’s first global assessment of the State of the World’s Plant Genetic Resources. He was responsible for drafting and negotiating the first FAO Global Plan of Action on the Conservation and Sustainable Utilization of Plant Genetic Resources, formally adopted by 150 countries in 1996. Following this, Dr Fowler twice served as Special Assistant to the Secretary General of the World Food Summit and represented the CGIAR in the multi-year negotiations on the International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources. 

In 2015, Dr Fowler was appointed to the Board for International Food and Agricultural Development by President Obama. He is a former board member of the International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center, and former chair of the Livestock Conservancy. 

Dr Fowler has been recognised with several honorary doctorates and many awards including the Thomas Jefferson Award for Citizen Leadership, the Heinz Award, the Meyer Medal from the Crop Science Society of America, the Wm. Brown Award from the Missouri Botanical Garden, and the Proctor Medal from the Garden Clubs of America.

Dr Cary Fowler – KEYNOTE ADDRESS 5 September 2023
Dr Cary Fowler – QA for Keynote Address, 5 September 2023
Session 5. Conversation on policy settings – Ubalijoro, Fowler, Anderson, Umberger, 5 September 2023