El Batán, Mexico, 28 July 2014 – Manuel Villa Issa, noted agricultural economist and educator, has joined the Board of Trustees of the International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center (CIMMYT). Villa Issa is the Coordinator for Research, Innovation and Partnerships of the National Institute for Research on Forestry, Crops and Livestock of Mexico (INIFAP).
Villa Issa has been a senior professor-researcher at the Colegio de Postgraduados (CP) since 1974. His focus is the economic analysis of investment, public policies and quantitative methods. During 1995-96 he served as Director General of CP, facilitating courses for CP and other national institutions. He also served as President of El Colegio de Puebla AC from 2005-11.
In addition Villa Issa has held a number of key federal and state positions, most recently serving as a member of the transition team of Lic. Enrique Peña Nieto, President of the United Mexican States, in the area of agriculture (2012). Over the course of his career he has also served as: Secretary of Rural Development of the State of Puebla (1993-1999); Federal Delegate of the Secretary of Agriculture and Hydraulic Resources, known as SARH (1991-99); Executive Officer at the National Institute of Forestry, Agriculture and Livestock Research (1988-89); SARH Sub-Secretary of Forestry, Agriculture and Livestock Development (1986-88); Federal Deputy at the LXII Legislature of the Mexican Congress (1982-85); and Federal Delegate of the Secretary of Planning and Budgeting (1978-82).
Villa Issa has published several books and articles on agricultural economics for national and international science journals. His most recent publication is What do we do with Mexican Agriculture? (2nd edition; Mundi-Prensa, 2011).
During his career Villa Issa has received various awards and distinctions, including: Confederación Nacional Agronómica A.C. (Agronomic Merit Award in 2004); the Annual Economy Award presented by Banamex, with a special mention for his research (1976); honorable mention for his academic studies; member of the Universidad Autónoma Chapingo honors board since 1963; member and active participant of the Institutional Revolutionary Party since 1974.
Villa Issa received his B.S. in agricultural engineering from the Escuela Nacional de Agricultura (now Universidad Autónoma Chapingo) in 1967. He earned a M.Sc. from CP and a Ph.D. from Purdue University, both in agricultural economics.