Born in Ouagadougou, the capital of Burkina Faso, Joseph Batieno is the second son among 30 siblings. Although his father was a soldier, his family spent holidays in the fields planting. It was then that he developed the passion for agriculture.
Joseph obtained his first degree in Biochemistry at the University of Ouagadougou and obtained a certificate in Agricultural Studies at the Institute of Rural Development, University of Bobo Dioulasso, Burkina Faso. He further obtained his Master’s degree in Plant Breeding at the University of Ouagadougou.
Working in a team of cowpea Plant Breeders who are soon to go on retirement, Joseph was encouraged to pursue plant breeding so as to take over from the old folks. He is currently employed at the Institut de Environment et de Recherches Agricoles, INERA, Ouagadougou.
“Cowpea is the major cash crop after cotton in Burkina Faso. It is important to follow the needs of farmers who want high yields, larger sized and white cowpea varieties which must be resistant to striga, drought, diseases and pests”… Joseph says.
Joseph heard about the WACCI PhD programme from a colleague at the Africa Centre for Crop Improvement, South Africa. “My first application for the WACCI PhD programme was rejected because it arrived late. However, because of my strong passion to pursue a course in Plant Breeding, I reapplied the following year and I was fortunate to win the scholarship. “It is my hope that at the end of my studies, I will be able to contribute to the green revolution in Burkina Faso and beyond”