Secretary Vilsack at G8 Open Data for Agriculture Conference | IIP Digital
Use the link to access the full text of the speech opening as follows: "I would like to welcome you to Washington, D.C. to the G-8 International Conference on Open Data for Agriculture. For those who have traveled great distances to be here with us, I want to thank you in particular for your commitment to agriculture, and your interest in economic development and food security in your home nation. I would also like to welcome the audience that is joining the conference via the web. It is my pleasure to serve as the head of the U.S. delegation and I would like to thank the U.S. delegates from across our Government who are joining me here today. As many of you know, the United States took lead responsibility in planning this conference in close coordination with G-8 colleagues. This conference would not be possible without the committed support of those G-8 colleagues. I would like to recognize the United Kingdom, who holds the 2013 G-8 Presidency, for their support leading up to the conference and we look forward to further collaboration leading up to the 2013 Summit. I would also like to recognize and thank USDA Under Secretary and Chief Scientist, Dr. Catherine Woteki for her devoted leadership in the planning and preparation of the conference. No one is more committed to strengthening the critical science behind agricultural production than Dr. Woteki. This conference reflects her commitment to a strong agricultural research enterprise that will benefit people around the world. I would like to also thank Todd Park, White House Chief Technology Officer, and his team, for their efforts and participation. Last but not least, I would like to thank the World Bank for partnering with the G-8 to host the conference. And thank you, Rachel, for the generous hospitality of your organization. Our partnership further illustrates the importance of this critical issue. We're here today because together, we face a crucial challenge in figuring out how we will feed a growing global population in a sustainable way. Particularly in the developing world, there is tremendous opportunity for G-8 nations and others to provide solutions through shared capacity building tools. Greater access to these tools will allow farmers and ranchers around the world to produce more, increase access to food, and ultimately provide ladders of opportunity with improved incomes for people in rural places around the world. Data – all of the information we have acquired through groundbreaking research and investigation – is and will be a critical factor in this effort. It has quickly become one of the most important aspects in expanding agriculture's reach. Access to research data has already yielded some of the most important breakthroughs in modern life. And this week, we seek to work together to identify more breakthroughs and to expand their benefits ..."