Jacques Diouf

Jacques Diouf

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Jacques Diouf is a Senegal
Senegal , officially the Republic of Senegal , is a country in western Africa. It owes its name to the Sénégal River that borders it to the east and north...

ese diplomat with the Food and Agriculture Organization
Food and Agriculture Organization
The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations is a specialised agency of the United Nations that leads international efforts to defeat hunger. Serving both developed and developing countries, FAO acts as a neutral forum where all nations meet as equals to negotiate agreements and...

 (FAO) of the United Nations
United Nations
The United Nations is an international organization whose stated aims are facilitating cooperation in international law, international security, economic development, social progress, human rights, and achievement of world peace...

. He has been serving as Director-General
The term director-general is a title given the highest executive officer within a governmental, statutory, NGO, third sector or not-for-profit institution.-European Union:...

 of FAO since January 1994. His term will end in January 2012; his successor, José Graziano da Silva
José Graziano da Silva
José Graziano da Silva is an American-born Brazilian agronomist and writer. As a scholar, he has authored several books about the problems of agriculture in Brazil...

, was elected in June 2011.


Diouf attended primary and secondary school in his native Saint-Louis, Senegal
Saint-Louis, Senegal
Saint-Louis, or Ndar as it is called in Wolof, is the capital of Senegal's Saint-Louis Region. Located in the northwest of Senegal, near the mouth of the Senegal River, and 320 km north of Senegal's capital city Dakar, it has a population officially estimated at 176,000 in 2005. Saint-Louis...

. He then traveled to France
The French Republic , The French Republic , The French Republic , (commonly known as France , is a unitary semi-presidential republic in Western Europe with several overseas territories and islands located on other continents and in the Indian, Pacific, and Atlantic oceans. Metropolitan France...

, where he earned a bachelor of science
Bachelor of Science
A Bachelor of Science is an undergraduate academic degree awarded for completed courses that generally last three to five years .-Australia:In Australia, the BSc is a 3 year degree, offered from 1st year on...

 in Agriculture from the Ecole nationale d'agriculture, Grignon-Paris Institut National Agronomique Paris-Grignon
Institut national agronomique Paris-Grignon
The Institut National Agronomique Paris-Grignon was a French grande école. It was created in 1971 by merging the Institut national agronomique and the École nationale supérieure d'Agronomie de Grignon, thus having a history that goes back to 1826.INA P-G disappeared as an administrative entity on...

, a Master of Science
Master of Science
A Master of Science is a postgraduate academic master's degree awarded by universities in many countries. The degree is typically studied for in the sciences including the social sciences.-Brazil, Argentina and Uruguay:...

 in Tropical Agronomy from the Ecole nationale d'application d'agronomie tropicale, Nogent-Paris (France), Doctor of Philosophy in Social Sciences of the Rural Sector from the (Agricultural Economics) from the Faculté de droit et de sciences économiques, Panthéon - Sorbonne
The Sorbonne is an edifice of the Latin Quarter, in Paris, France, which has been the historical house of the former University of Paris...

, Paris.


Beginning in 1963 at the age of 25 , Diouf was the Director of the European Office and the Agricultural Program of the Marketing Board (Paris/Dakar). Leaving that position in 1964, Diouf became the Director of the African Groundnut Council
African Groundnut Council
The African Groundnut Council is a state-level organization designed to promote groundnuts produced in the countries of The Gambia, Mali, Niger, Senegal, the Sudan and Nigeria.-History:...

 based in Nigeria
Nigeria , officially the Federal Republic of Nigeria, is a federal constitutional republic comprising 36 states and its Federal Capital Territory, Abuja. The country is located in West Africa and shares land borders with the Republic of Benin in the west, Chad and Cameroon in the east, and Niger in...

 from 1965 to 1971. From 1971 to 1977 Diouf was the Executive Secretary of the newly created West Africa Rice Development Association (WARDA) (now Africa Rice Center). Leaving WARDA in 1978, Diouf became the Secretary of State for Science and Technology of the government of Senegal under both Léopold Sédar Senghor
Léopold Sédar Senghor
Léopold Sédar Senghor was a Senegalese poet, politician, and cultural theorist who for two decades served as the first president of Senegal . Senghor was the first African elected as a member of the Académie française. Before independence, he founded the political party called the Senegalese...

 and his successor Abdou Diouf
Abdou Diouf
Abdou Diouf was the second President of Senegal, serving from 1981 to 2000. Diouf is notable both for coming to power by peaceful succession, and leaving willingly after losing the 2000 presidential election to Abdoulaye Wade...

 until 1983. In that year he became a member of the parliament of Senegal
Parliament of Senegal
The Parliament of Senegal is the country's bicameral national parliament. It was unicameral before 1999 and from 2001 to 2007; between 1999 and 2001 and since May 2007, the otherwise unicameral National Assembly of Senegal was only the parliament's lower house, with the indirectly elected Senate...

 and the Senegambian Confederation. In Senegal, he was chairman of the foreign relations committee. From 1985 to 1990, Diouf was the Secretary-General of the Central Bank for West African States, which is based in Dakar. Subsequently he was the Senegalese Ambassador to the United Nations from 1991 to 1993.

On 8 November 1993, Diouf was elected Director-General of FAO and in January 1994 began his first six-year term. Diouf has been re-elected twice and currently is serving his third six-year term which began in January 2006.

Other functions

During his career, Dr Diouf has also held other positions of responsibility, including:
  • Representative of Africa to the Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research, Washington, D.C. (USA)
  • Member of the Board of International Agricultural Centres: ICRAF, Nairobi (Kenya), ISNAR, The Hague (Netherlands), IITA, Lagos (Nigeria), as well as the International Institute of Scientific Research for African Development, Adiopodoumé (Côte d'Ivoire)and the International Foundation for Science, Stockholm (Sweden)
  • Member of the Council of the Islamic Foundation for Science and Technology for Development, Jeddah (Saudi Arabia)
  • Member of the Advisory Committee on Medical Research and the Committee on Transfer of Technology. Member of the Expert Advisory Panel on Public Health Administration and Medical Research, World Health Organization, Geneva Switzerland)
  • Member of the Council of African Advisers of the World Bank, Washington, D.C. (USA)
  • Adviser to the International Conservation Financing Project of the World Resources Institute, Washington, D.C. (USA)
  • Member of the Board of the United Nations University’s World Institute for Development Economics Research, Helsinki (Finland)
  • Member of the Executive Board of the African Capacity Building Foundation, Harare Zimbabwe)
  • Chairman of the Board of the African Regional Centre for Technology (ARCT), Dakar Senegal), the Industrial Company for the Uses of Solar Energy, Dakar (Senegal) and the Board of the Foundation for Development of Science and Technology, Dakar (Senegal)

Honors and criticism

Diouf has received multiple honors from governments around the world, including the Légion d'honneur
Légion d'honneur
The Legion of Honour, or in full the National Order of the Legion of Honour is a French order established by Napoleon Bonaparte, First Consul of the Consulat which succeeded to the First Republic, on 19 May 1802...

in France
The French Republic , The French Republic , The French Republic , (commonly known as France , is a unitary semi-presidential republic in Western Europe with several overseas territories and islands located on other continents and in the Indian, Pacific, and Atlantic oceans. Metropolitan France...

 as well as numerous governments across Africa
Africa is the world's second largest and second most populous continent, after Asia. At about 30.2 million km² including adjacent islands, it covers 6% of the Earth's total surface area and 20.4% of the total land area...

 and Latin America
Latin America
Latin America is a region of the Americas where Romance languages  – particularly Spanish and Portuguese, and variably French – are primarily spoken. Latin America has an area of approximately 21,069,500 km² , almost 3.9% of the Earth's surface or 14.1% of its land surface area...


In May 2006, a British newspaper published the resignation letter of Louise Fresco
Louise Fresco
Louise O. Fresco is a Dutch scientist, director and writer.-Current academic positions:...

, an Assistant Director General of FAO. In her letter, the widely respected Dr Fresco criticised Diouf's management style: "I am sad that you have isolated yourself so much from most senior managers. Combined with a lack of transparency in decision making, you have stimulated a culture of silence, rumors and even fear." Furthermore she stated that "the Organisation has been unable to adapt to a new era", that "our contribution and reputation have declined steadily" and "its leadership has not proposed bold options to overcome this crisis".

In 2010, a whistleblowing book which was attacked by Mr. Diouf and FAO for defamation (verdict still pending), was published on Amazon.com by an insider to the organization and describes the management methods and the state of the organization at the time of his departure after almost two decades in power.

These are the links to these most relevant documents
When FAO scores only 27 points in Transparency...

Independent Evaluation of the Food and Agriculture Organisation

Andrew Mitchel DFID's Head about FAO's performance

Interfaith activities

In 2009, he took part in a special synod
A synod historically is a council of a church, usually convened to decide an issue of doctrine, administration or application. In modern usage, the word often refers to the governing body of a particular church, whether its members are meeting or not...

 for Africa organized by the Catholic Church in Rome, even though Diouf is a Muslim. The synod discussed several pastoral issues that are not directly related to religion, and which involve cooperation between the Catholic Church and the United Nations
United Nations
The United Nations is an international organization whose stated aims are facilitating cooperation in international law, international security, economic development, social progress, human rights, and achievement of world peace...

, such as food security
Food security
Food security refers to the availability of food and one's access to it. A household is considered food-secure when its occupants do not live in hunger or fear of starvation. According to the World Resources Institute, global per capita food production has been increasing substantially for the past...

, the status of African health care
Health care
Health care is the diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of disease, illness, injury, and other physical and mental impairments in humans. Health care is delivered by practitioners in medicine, chiropractic, dentistry, nursing, pharmacy, allied health, and other care providers...

, and attempts to solve conflicts
War is a state of organized, armed, and often prolonged conflict carried on between states, nations, or other parties typified by extreme aggression, social disruption, and usually high mortality. War should be understood as an actual, intentional and widespread armed conflict between political...

 and achieve peace on the continent.

External links