HISTORY AND BACKGROUND

Given all the endeavors of the Government of Rwanda in the field of Biodiversity and Natural Resources, the CoE has the opportunity to contribute to various biodiversity policies and their implementation.

The idea for the creation of a Center of Excellence in Biodiversity originated from the first International Research Conference on Biodiversity, which took place in Kigali in July 2007. During his speech at this conference, H.E. the President of the Republic of Rwanda introduced the idea of the Center of Excellence in Biodiversity and Natural Resource Management. As quoted in his original message; “We also require effective and efficient institutions, with the appropriate human and physical infrastructure…Another key imperative is the scientific and research capacities to continuously monitor, create new knowledge, as well as generate innovative solutions. He also specifically mentioned the concept of a CoE creation when he stated “explore the possibility of establishing a centre of excellence in biodiversity and natural resources management for this region”

Since then, many initiatives have been undertaken and some achievements realized. Notably, a steering committee for the Center was established, appointment of focal points from each node institution, appointment of a coordinator and assistant, creation of a physical address and trainings of stakeholders in taxonomy and bioinformatics were accomplished. An office for the CoE hub was established and is hosted inside the premises of the University of Rwanda-Huye campus.

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