Project Partners

Multi-stakeholder collaboration – leveraging global talent.

University of Guelph University of Guelph

The University of Guelph is a comprehensive public research university in Guelph, Ontario, Canada. It is consistently ranked as a top comprehensive university in Canada by Maclean’s magazine.

Dr. Manish Raizada Dr. Manish Raizada

Manish N. Raizada received his B.Sc. from the University of Western Ontario (Genetics) and Ph.D. from Stanford University (Plant Molecular Genetics). He is currently an Associate Professor in the Department of Plant Agriculture at the University of Guelph, Canada. Dr. Raizada is Founder of SAKGlobal (SAKs, Sustainable Agriculture Kits), an effort to bring $1 technologies […]

Dr. Tejendra Chapagain Dr. Tejendra Chapagain

Dr. Tejendra Chapagain is a Research Associate at the Department of Plant Agriculture at the University of Guelph, Canada, and the Canadian Project Coordinator for SAKNepal. Dr. Chapagain originates from Nepal, and subsequently received a PhD in International Agriculture from the University of Tokyo, and a second PhD in Plant Science from the University of […]

Finlay Small Finlay Small

Finlay completed his BSc in agriculture from the University of Guelph in Canada and spent one year as an exchange student studying agroecology at Wageningen University in the Netherlands. In this project, Finlay will focus on selecting nitrogen fixing plants for the dry season to assist Nepalese farmers.

Dr. Malinda Thilakarathna Dr. Malinda Thilakarathna

I was born and raised in Sri Lanka, where I completed my B.Sc in agriculture and M.Sc in crop science at the University of Peradeniya, Sri Lanka. I completed my Ph.D at the Department of Biology, Dalhousie University, Nova Scotia, Canada. My PhD research work was on genotypic variability among diverse red clover cultivars for […]

Kamal Khadka Kamal Khadka

Mr. Kamal Khadka did his Masters in Agriculture (Plant Breeding) from Institute of Agriculture and and Animal Science (IAAS), Nepal. Mr. Khadka has more than seven years of professional experience in participatory research and development. He started his career as a rice breeder in Local Initiatives for Biodiversity, Research and Development (LI-BIRD); and also coordinated […]

Austin Bruch Austin Bruch

Austin is a BSc (agriculture) student at the University of Guelph in Canada as well as a mechanic apprentice and inventor. As part of an undergraduate thesis project, Austin is conducting a literature review on tools and machinery available for hillside and terrace farmers.

Caleb Niemeyer Caleb Niemeyer

Lab research assistant for GlnLux project I am in my third year of a Bachelor of Science in Agriculture at the University of Guelph. I joined Dr. Manish Raizada’s lab in the fall of 2014 where I have been assisting Dr. Malinda Thilakarathna. The focus of our work has been to improve the nitrogen fixation […]

Ralph C. Martin, PhD, P.AG. Ralph C. Martin, PhD, P.AG.

Ralph C. Martin grew up on a beef and hog farm in Wallenstein, Ontario, where he learned the essentials of agriculture from his grandfather. After 4-H, Ralph’s formal education includes a B.A. and M.Sc. in Biology from Carleton University and a PhD in Plant Science from McGill University. In 1990, he began teaching at the […]

Jaclyn Clark Jaclyn Clark

I completed a Bachelor of Science in Agriculture at the University of Guelph in the Spring of 2015, and will begin a MSc in the Department of Agriculture in September 2015. My main role in the project has been conducting research and completing extensive research on the opportunity for terrace farmers in Nepal to grow […]

Rachana Devkota Rachana Devkota

Rachana worked for about six years in Nepal and South Asia through LI-BIRD focusing on the gender and social inclusion issues in agriculture and biodiversity management aspects. She has wider experience of managing projects and program, conducting social and gender research and analyzing the findings in quantitative and qualitative way. Rachana will contribute in designing and […]

David Borish David Borish

I am an undergraduate international development major that works with video and photography to promote awareness about various issues concerning the environment and human development. My role with SAK will be to produce a short film that focuses on the challenges Nepalese hillside farmers face, and how SAK is providing practical solutions to improve their […]

Lisa Smith Lisa Smith

Lisa Smith recently graduated from Conestoga College’s Graphic Design program and is now a freelance illustrator, hoping to make a mark in the world. Lisa’s role in SAKNepal is the conceptualization and execution of the digital illustrations, which will be used not just in the book but on all kinds of products and packaging.

Sara Wyngaarden Sara Wyngaarden

Role: Assistant for literature review on: dietary constraints in S. Asia I am an undergraduate student in the Arts and Science program at the University of Guelph, studying Agriculture, International Development, and Music. I am interested in creative approaches to agricultural extension for subsistence farmers in developing countries. Currently, I am providing research assistance in […]

Dr. Andreas Boecker Dr. Andreas Boecker

Associate Professor, co-supervisor of Eamonn McGuinty I obtained my MSc and PhD at Kiel University in Germany and joined the Department of Food, Agricultural and Resource Economics at U of G in September 2005. My research experience that is most directly related to the SAKNepal project is in the area of innovation capacity and adoption […]

Eamonn McGuinty Eamonn McGuinty

I have been fortunate to take on the role of marketing, outreach and commercialization of the Sustainable Agriculture Kits (SAKs) with the University of Guelph. Manish Raizada has been instrumental in guiding me through his vision for the project and how I can bring entrepreneurial aspects to the project. My role will consist but will […]


Local Initiatives for Biodiversity, Research, and Development (LI-BIRD) is a non-governmental organization (NGO) that started operating in Nepal in 1995. It is committed to capitalizing on local initiatives for the sustainable management of renewable natural resources and to improving the livelihoods of resource-poor and marginalized people. Over the past eighteen years, LI-BIRD has worked in […]

Dr. Pashupati Chaudary Dr. Pashupati Chaudary

Dr. Pashupati Chaudhary is an environmental scientist working in the field of biodiversity conservation, integrated conservation and development, climate change, ecosystem services, agriculture and food security, participatory research, and sustainable landscape development in the South Asia region since 1998. Dr. Chaudhary has earned Bachelors of Science degree in Agriculture from Nepal, and Masters degree in […]

Roshan Pudasaini Roshan Pudasaini

Education: M.Sc. Agriculture in Soil Science from Institute of Agriculture and Animal Science, Tribhuvan University, Nepal Experience: Six years of work experience in integrated home garden management, family nutrition and food security, working with the disadvantaged group and monitoring and evaluation Role in project: Project Leader (Coordinate overall project implementation and monitoring from the side […]

Deepak Upadhya Deepak Upadhya

Designation: Programme Officer, LI-BIRD Education: Masters in Agricultural Economics Experience: Three years of work experience in socioeconomic studies and impact assessment. Familiar with SPSS and excel tools to process and analyze data.  Role in project: Assist project team to conduce surveys/studies and analyse the data. E-mail:

Bir Bahadur Tamang Bir Bahadur Tamang

Designation: Project Officer, LI-BIRD Education: Masters in Economics Experience: More than 20 years work experience in soil and plant analysis laboratory. Role in project: Assist the project team in soil and plant analysis as well as lead the GlnLux technology testing at LI-BIRD. E-mail: 

Rajeev Dhakal Rajeev Dhakal

Designation: Plant Breeder, LI-BIRD Education: Masters in Plant Breeding Experience: Engaged in participatory plant breeding researches programmes Role in project: Assist the project team in testing of Hybrid Maize Seed production for the benefit of smallholder farming communities E-mail: 

Sajal Sthapit Sajal Sthapit

Designation: Deputy Director of Programme Operations, LI-BIRD Education: MS in Sustainable Development and Conservation Biology Experience: Sajal worked three years for EcoAgriculture Partners in Washington, DC highlighting the need to consider agriculture and land use for integrating adaptation, mitigation and rural development. In the five years at LI-BIRD he has worked on research design and implementation (community-based biodiversity […]

Khem Raj Chowi (Subedi) Khem Raj Chowi (Subedi)

Education: Junior Technical Assisstant (JTA), Institute of Agriculture and Animal Science, Tribhuvan University, Nepal Experience: Fourteen year of work experience as a technical assistant, own expertise in implementation of field trials, data recording, reporting, field planning, monitoring, supervision, providing training to motivators, CBOs and farmers. Role in project: Senior Technical Assisstant (Planning, implementation of field […]

Laxmi Rai Lama Laxmi Rai Lama

Education: Junior Technician (Plant Science), Lahan Experience: Six year of work experience as technical assisstant, own expertise in program planning, community group formation, planning, implementation of agriculture related training, data reporting and recording. Role in project: Senior Technical Assistant (Planning, implementation of field activities, supervision, monitoring, coordination linkage and facilitation at community level)

Khem Gurung Khem Gurung

Designation: Senior Agriculture Technician, LI-BIRD Education: Certificate level Experience: Engaged in agricultural researches as field technician for more than 20 years Role in project: Testing of various SAKs at community level including field trials, Community mobilization and coordination with local stakeholders

Bishnu BK Bishnu BK

Designation: Community Mobilizer, LI-BIRD Education: Bachelors in Arts Experience: Engaged in various research and development project as social mobilizer for more than 4 years Role in project: Testing of various SAKs at community level including field trials, Community mobilization and coordination with local stakeholders

Mahesh Shrestha Mahesh Shrestha

Designation: Thematic Coordinator of Knowledge Management and Capacity Building for Wider Impacts, LI-BIRD Education: BA in Fine Arts and MA in Anthropology Experience: Ten years of work experience in the field of Arts, Media and communication. Role in project: Assist the project team in documentation, communication and publication works. E-mail: 

Bhawana Ghimire Bhawana Ghimire

Education: B Sc. Agriculture from Institute of Agriculture and Animal Science, Tribhuvan University, Nepal Experience: Conducting of socio-economic surveys and field trials during academic courses. Role in project: Project Officer (Coordinate project implementation activities at field level, community mobilization, field monitoring, reporting, data collection, and analysis using appropriate statistical packages). E-mail:, Phone no: 9849306670.

Samjhana Sinjali Magar Samjhana Sinjali Magar

Education: Junior Technical Assisstant, Uttarpani Technical School, Dhankuta Experience: Two year of work experience in Agriculture Cooperative, own experience in the field of micro-finance, group formation, mobilization, community development and conducting various type of survey at the field level. Role in project: Technical Assisstant (Planning, implementation of field activities, supervision, monitoring, coordination linkage and facilitation […]

Anamolbiu Anamolbiu

Anamolbiu is one of the few seed companies in Nepal with strong research and development. In partnership with government and not for profit actors, our research and development strives towards improving food and nutritional security of disadvantaged communities in Nepal. We produce our own breeder and foundation seeds of new and popular varieties of vegetables, […]

Puskar Sharma Rimal Puskar Sharma Rimal

Education: B.B.S. in Marketing from Tribhuvan University Nepal. Experience: Teaching students in Boarding Schools for more than 3 years and worked in business dealings with various doctors as a Medical Representative for a private company. Role in project: Marketing Research Officer; business dealing with dealer/sub-dealer for promotion and scaling up of SAKs, preparing and updating […]

Dr. Ram Rana Dr. Ram Rana

Education: PhD in International and Rural Development from the University of Reading, United Kingdom Experience: More than twenty years of work experience in the field of biodiversity conservation, own expertise in project development, fund raising, monitoring and evaluation, data analysis, operational research, biodiversity conservation. Role in project: Chief Executive Officer, Anmolbiu (Coordinate overall implementation and […]

Dr. Kirit Patel Dr. Kirit Patel

Dr. Kirit Patel is an Assistant Professor in the International Development Studies Program, Menno Simons College affiliated with the University of Winnipeg & Canadian Mennonite University, Winnipeg. Dr. Patel has extensive experience as an academic, development policy analyst, and community development practitioner. His research is focused on food and nutrition security, farm conservation of agrobiodiversity, […]

Canadian Mennonite University Canadian Mennonite University

CMU is an innovative Christian university, rooted in the Anabaptist Mennonite tradition, moved and transformed by the life and teachings of Jesus Christ. Through teaching, research and service CMU inspires and equips women and men for lives of service, leadership and reconciliation in church and society.

Sanjeev Adhikari Sanjeev Adhikari

Designation: Manager, Anmolbiu Company Private Limited Education: MBA (Agriculture and Food Business) Experience: Worked in various organizations to have experiences in Social Sciences, Organic Agriculture, and Seed Business Role in project: Marketing manager, Anmolbiu (Coordination and active participation in relation to quality seed production, supplying biodiversity kits to farmers group, business dealing with dealer/sub-dealer for promotion […]

Dr. Hom Gartaula Dr. Hom Gartaula

Hom completed his PhD in Social Sciences from Wageningen University in the Netherlands. He has extensive experience working as a researcher, educator and practitioner in the field of international development with focus on agrarian change, wellbeing, food security and labour migration. In this project, Hom’s research focuses on agricultural innovation, family farms and gender norms […]


Supporting ideas, fostering innovation IDRC believes that research and innovation hold the keys to progress in developing countries. To make knowledge a tool for addressing pressing challenges, we provide researchers in developing countries with the financial resources, advice, and training that will help them find solutions to the local problems they identify we encourage sharing […]

Dr. Kevin Tiessen Dr. Kevin Tiessen

Kevin Tiessen is a soil scientist with expertise in agronomy, food security, and long-term protection of soil and water. He holds a PhD from McGill University in Montreal. At IDRC, he is the program coordinator of the CA$124 million Canadian International Food Security Research Fund (CIFSRF) – a joint program of IDRC and the Department […]