Collaboration Agreement between AgMIP and IICA
The Agricultural Model lntercomparison and Improvement Project (hereinafter referred to as “AgMIP,” represented by the chair of its Executive Committee, Dr. Cynthia Rosenzweig, the Inter-American Institute for Cooperation on Agriculture, hereinafter referred to as “IICA,” represented by its Director General, Dr. Manuel Otero, agree to sign the present Letter of Intent, subject to the following recitals and clauses:
IICA has been the specialized agency of the Inter-American System for agriculture for 75 years, and its mission is “to encourage, promote and support its Member States in their efforts to achieve agricultural development and rural well-being through international technical cooperation of excellence.” IICA provides direct technical cooperation through actions focused on six strategic priorities: to reposition agriculture and rural life, and renew its institutional framework; to promote trade and the competitiveness of agribusiness; to promote the development of rural communities under an area-based approach; to promote agricultural health and food safety; to promote sustainable management of natural resources and the environment; and to promote the introduction of technology and innovation for the modernization of agriculture and rural development.
AgMIP is a major international effort linking the climate, crop, livestock, nutrition, and economic modeling communities with cutting-edge information technology to produce improved crop and economic models and the next generation of climate impact projections for the agricultural sector. Its mission is to improve substantially the characterization of food and nutrient security as affected by climate variability and change, and to enhance adaptation capacity in both developing and developed countries. AgMIP conducts its research with principles that are based in scientific integrity, openness & inclusion, advocacy, transparency, collaboration, and resiliency & flexibility.
Under a previous letter of intent, these institutions have already successfully worked together to hold the seventh global AgMIP meeting and to collaborate on several workshops, webinars and concept notes.
Both institutions recognize the existence of areas of common interest in which continued joint efforts can contribute to achieving their respective objectives and to strengthening the ability of IICA’s member States to address climate change in the agricultural sector. The joint, complementary efforts of AgMIP and IICA can contribute more effectively to agricultural and rural development in the Americas than could be achieved by the separate and independent actions of each.
Have agreed as follows:
Clause 1. Objectives
The Principal Investigators of AgMIP and the Representatives of IICA affirm that, together, they will pursue the following objectives:
- Support countries in the development of science-based climate change adaptation and mitigation commitments, strategies, and plans for the agricultural sector.
- Develop the capacities of public agricultural institutions to effectively use modeling tools.
- Implement regional assessments to improve the understanding of potential climate change impacts in agricultural systems.
- Seek opportunities for the development and funding of collaborative proposals by which the conditions and terms for specific working arrangements will be established through cooperative agreements, grants, contracts, or subcontracts involving one or more of the Parties.
Clause 2. Possible areas of collaboration
Subject to their operational capabilities, technical knowledge and resource availability, the parties hereby declare their intention to collaborate to:
- Develop studies and/or publications on matters related to climate change impacts on the agricultural sector and strategies to address them.
- Direct advisory services, provided by technical missions or individual experts.
- Cooperate in the preparation and execution of projects related to the strategic objectives mentioned above.
- Build capacity through exchanges, workshops, courses, seminars, and study trips, and joint facilitation of processes.
- Exchange information related to agriculture, food security, and climate change science, policy, and processes.
- Develop project proposals to leverage funds that allow for the design and implementation of comprehensive assessments to inform decision-making processes.
Both AgMIP Principal Investigators and IICA Representatives will keep each other informed of activities and opportunities for joint research through teleconferences and meetings (potentially with other AgMIP partners), exchange of newsletters, etc.
Clause 3. Operating Procedures
Each Party shall entrust a staff member with the responsibility of maintaining contact and coordinating all of the activities leading to the signing of agreements or letters of understanding, whether they are bilateral or with multiple partners. AgMIP assigns co-responsibility for ensuring coordination of the present Letter of Intent to Drs. Carolyn Mutter and Mr. Erik Mencos. IICA assigns responsibility for ensuring coordination of the present Letter of Intent to the Climate Change, Natural Resources and Management of Production Risks Program coordination team.
Specific projects within the framework of the abovementioned agreements shall be established to execute any collaboration activities derived from the present Letter of Intent.
Clause 4. Anti-fraud and Anti-Corruption Policy
IICA has in place mechanisms for the prevention, detection, reporting, denouncing and sanction of fraud and corruption that are an integral part of its best practices of governance and administration. Pursuant to its code of ethics, its values and the respective law in the country in which it operates, IICA maintains a zero tolerance approach with respect to fraud and corruption. This policy applies to both personnel of the Institute, as well as to individuals and companies with which it maintains a relationship in different activities.
Clause 5. Resolution of Disputes
Any disagreement that may arise as to the interpretation of the present Agreement shall be resolved by mutual agreement between the Parties.
Clause 6. Privileges and Immunities
Nothing conferred in the present Agreement, or related to same, is to be considered an express or tacit renunciation of the immunities and privileges, exonerations and benefits enjoyed by IICA and its personnel in accordance with international law, treaties or international agreements or the national legislation of its Member States.
Clause 7. Entry into force and duration
The present Letter of Intent shall enter into force on the date it is signed and shall remain in effect for a period of three years. The present Letter of Intent may be extended, following an analysis by the Parties of the results in the period coming to a close, three months in advance of its expiration date.
Appendix 1: Priority areas for collaboration
Advance Regional Integrated Assessment (RIA) – related activities in the Caribbean and the dry corridor of Central America. RIA-related activities in other regions (e.g., Andes, Southern Cone) may be considered in the future.
Develop proposal concepts for each region, socialize with partners and identify opportunities for the development of full project proposals.
- Caribbean – to engage 5Cs and others (CARICOM, OECS, CARDI, Universities,) for possible approach to donors in support of RAPs for the region and RIA pilots in 1 or 2 of the larger countries.
- Central America – to engage CAC Ministers and others (i.e.: CCAD, CATIE, CIAT, Development Bank, etc.) on regional Representative Agricultural Pathways (RAPs), with linkages to RIA pilots in 1 or 2 countries.
Develop short policy briefs for potential presentation to ministers during the IABA (held every 2 years; (pending approval by event organizers) or at other opportunities.
Explore student exchange as a component of the collaboration; targeted to support the broader RIA-related efforts IICA and AgMIP are developing. The initial focus is a pilot between Columbia University (CU) and IICA, and targets the following proposed areas of exchange:
- CU masters or doctoral student internships in IICA countries
- and IICA students to the Earth Institute and CU graduate programs.