Plenary: Challenges to food security in the face of global catastrophe risks

In times of crisis and global risks, very few issues have as many factors feeding into them as food security. The integrative measures envisaged by various global players link the actions that are needed to meet the challenges we face. These should be considered in terms of technology, economics and security to ensure the future of food security, but also how science validates the environmental the environmental impact and guarantees the viability of the processes.

Jennifer Wiegel is the Sub Regional Manager for Central America and a scientist in the Food Environment and Consumer Behavior research area of the Alliance of Bioversity International and CIAT. Her research includes work on agri-food systems, food markets and value chains for inclusion and sustainability and public procurement. She has a Ph.D. in Sociology from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and a Master’s in Rural Sociology from the same University.

Juan Fernando Zuluaga is the National Territorial Coordinator for Antioquia. He has a PhD in Social Sciences from the University of Antioquia and a Master in RuralEconomics from the Federal University of Ceará-Brazil. Juan is a specialist in finance from the Latin American Autonomous University and Agricultural Engineer from the National University of Medellín.

Thomas Hartung, MD, PhD. Professor of environmental health sciences at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health and Whiting School of Engineering and Professor for Pharmacology and Toxicology at University of Konstanz, Germany. He is leading the revolution in toxicology to move away from 50+ year old animal testing to organoid cultures and the use of artificial intelligence.

New keynote

Climate change: How to embroider the risks that put the stability of the most vulnerable at risk

Paola Andrea Arias Gómez is Professor of the Environmental School of the Faculty of Engineering of the University of Antioquia. In 2021 she was El Espectador’s Person of the Year and received the Medellin Council’s Orchid Award for Scientific Merit.

Paola completed her undergraduate studies in Civil Engineering and a Master’s degree in Water Resources Development at the National University of Colombia, Medellin. She was Head of the Environmental School of the Faculty of Engineering of the University of Antioquia and is now a member of the First Working Group of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). She is also a member of the GEWEX Hydroclimatology Panel (GHP), the Amazon Regional Hydrogeomorphology Working Group (UNESCO) and the WCRP Science Plan Development Team (WCRP) Lighthouse Activities – My Climate Risk.

Parallel session:

In conversation: “Organoid intelligence”: the future of modern computing from human brain cells.

Biocomputing is a huge effort to compact computational power and increase its efficiency to overcome current technological limits. Researchers at Johns Hopkins delve into this technology that may one day produce computers that are faster, more efficient and more powerful than silicon-based computing and AI.

Thomas Hartung, MD, PhD. will present the team’s latest research and discuss its context, implications and what his hopes are for the field.

Thomas Hartung is the Director of Centers for Alternatives to Animal Testing (CAAT, of both universities. CAAT hosts the secretariat of the Evidence-based Toxicology Collaboration ( and manages collaborative programs on Good Read-Across Practice, Good Cell Culture Practice, Green Toxicology, Developmental Neurotoxicity, Developmental Immunotoxicity, Microphysiological Systems and Refinement.

LATAM offer

We have partnered with LATAM airlines to offer special WCSJ discounts on business and economy class flights from Latin America. There are specific rates for different departure points and the offer is available on flights from Chile, Brazil, Ecuador, Peru, Argentina and Colombia.

Discounted flights will be on sale from now until 27 March 2023 for travel between 20 March and 03 April 2023. To benefit from this offer, bookings must be made through Gema Tours, as this agency is authorised to manage the discounts. Discounted tickets are limited and will be sold on a first come first served basis, so don’t delay!

Tours and excursions

There are many tours and excursions you can sign up for at WCSJ Medellín. From half day tours of local areas of the city: Pueblito Paisa, Plaza Botero, Metro Cable, and Comuna 13, to a hiking tour of El Canon de la Serpiente, and cycle tourism in the region, you can get to know the city and culture first hand with excellent guides.

Several scientific trips are hosted by EAFIT University. You can learn about EAFIT Children’s University, Earth Sciences research or their Center for Urban and Environmental Studies. The The Universidad de Antioquia offers tours to their University Museum, Centro de Desarrollo Agro-Biotecnológico de Innovación e Integración Territorial, their Bioinstrumentation and Clinical Engineering Research Group, or find out all you wanted to know and more about coffee in their ‘Bartender for Peace’ experience.

You can also visit the visiting the campus of the Alliance of Bioversity International and the International Center for Tropical Agriculture (CIAT), near Cali, in southwestern Colombia where you will tour the Future Seeds Genebank, find out what researchers are doing with AI, drones and precision agriculture, and learn about restoring soil health, research initiatives into improving cocoa production, the evolution of rice and enjoy an informal chat and cocktail with scientists.

At the World Mosquito Program’s mosquito mass production facility in Medellín, you will receive a tour of the insectary, which is capable of producing 40 million Wolbachia-carrying mosquitoes each week.

Now is the time to promote women – award winner

Elsevier and SciDev.Net organised a series of three interviews with influential female changemakers and then bring them to the World Conference of Science Journalists (WCSJ) in Medellin, to host a networking discussion on gender in research. The objective is to allow that the change maker women share their experiences with attendees and each other, generate debate on gender in research, strengthen the network of people around gender in research, and spark further collaborations.

Researcher Magaly Blas dedicates her work to caring for maternal and neonatal health in rural and remote areas of the Peruvian Amazon. She wants her research to have a positive impact on communities and serve as the basis for public policies on health in Peru. Full article here

The World Conference of Science Journalists (WCSJ, is the biggest global event on science journalism, attracting approximately 1,200 journalists covering science and medical issues, as well as international experts, scientists, and communicators, among others. Register here

The 10th World Conference of Science Journalists (WCSJ2017) in San Francisco (26–30 October 2017) and the 11th World Conference of Science Journalists (WCSJ2019) in Lausanne (1-5 July 2019) both attracted more than 1,300 attendees. WCSJ2022 Medellín will be hosted at the extraordinary venue of the city’s Jardin Botánico de Medellín from 27-31 March 2023.
The logos of all sponsors we have to date, listed on the congress site in the partner section

For partnership opportunities please contact us

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