Mellissa Wood: Associate Scientist

Mellissa is an Associate Scientist with CSIRO Agriculture and Food and an Independent Consultant in agricultural research and international development. She has 28 years’ experience in providing scientific and strategic advice and has held senior leadership positions with the Australian Government and internationally with International Agricultural Research agencies, including CGIAR.

Mellissa’s research interests include developing research programs that underpin transformative agri-food systems and build adaptive capacity for achieving Sustainable Development Goal outcomes. She is skilled in food and nutrition security, sustainable development, agri-food systems research, biodiversity and program development with a focus on family farming systems across the African, Southeast Asian and Pacific regions.

Recently retired as General Manager, Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research (ACIAR), Mellissa led ACIAR’s research engagement with global and multilateral fora and built ACIAR’s international research alliances in Africa. She represented Australia on the CGIAR System Council and SIMEC, CGIAR System Management Board and Chaired Asia Pacific Association of Agricultural Research Institutes (APAARI). She spent 5 years as a Director at the Global Crop Diversity Trust in Rome developing and implementing a global strategy for the conservation and access of plant genetic resources with the FAO and CGIAR and 15 years at the Bureau of Rural Sciences providing scientific advice and spatial tools for domestic decision-making to the Federal Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries.

Mellissa has a Master of Public Policy in Development Policy from Crawford School of Public Policy, Australian National University. She is a graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors (GAICD) and has a Bachelor of Science in Resource and Environmental Management from the Australian National University.

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