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Bridging Skills for Sustainable, Ecological and Digital Transformation

Alumni 2020/2021


I’m Yacouba Coulibaly from Burkina Faso - the country of Thomas Sankara, a great symbol of panafricanism and source of inspiration of the Africa of youth. His visionary leadership turned the country from a sleepy West African nation to a dynamo of progress. He once said: “You can't make fundamental changes without a certain amount of craziness. In this case, it comes from nonconformism, the courage to turn your back on old formulas, the courage to invent the future. It took the madmen of yesterday to make us capable of acting with extreme clarity today.” Inscribing myself in this vision of things, I undertook a challenging academic journey ranging from Natural sciences (Chemistry and Biology) to agricultural sciences (Crops protection and breeding) and Sociology (Rural innovation and development) at the University of Ouagadougou and Economics sciences here, in Italy (e.g. Human development and food security at the University of Roma Tre and now Development economics and international cooperation at the University of Tor Vergata). All this has been undertaken with the intention of better understanding and contributing to challenge the thinking, the theory and practice of development and proposing more appropriated ways taking into consideration the real aspirations and resources of the communities on the ground and also considering the complex interactions of different factors and dynamics in a systemic manner. I think it is at this condition that we will be able to bring about real change and development in complex contexts such as in Africa. Beyond my multidisciplinary academic background, I capitalize working experiences with various actors such as local and international NGOs, businesses, universities and research centers in diverse thematic sectors. I’m currently working with FAO as consultant in the Social Policies and Rural Institutions division (ESP) where I technically support and also contribute to policies, programmes and projects design and implementation for boosting rural youth employment and entrepreneurship in the agrifood systems. My dream is to invest in African rural kids, youth and women through education, research and training to make them agents of change and sustainable development building on their potential, scarce resources and motivation. In that optic, concluding my training with a PhD is a must and the MESCI Master constitutes a stepping towards the achieving of this next academic goal.