Call edition 2012
A new edition of the Prize of the Belgian Development Cooperation has been launched. This call is open until March 31st, 2011. You can read in the regulations whether you comply with the criteria for participation.
The scientific quality of Dr. Thi Tu Huynh’s doctoral thesis is very high - indeed, several chapters are published as articles in leading scientific journals - and is also noteworthy for the clarity with which it is written. Especially striking, however, is its relevance to developing countries, not only Vietnam but also other developing countries in which aquaculture is already a major source of income or may become so in the future.
The thesis begins with a comprehensive description of shrimp farming in the Mekong Delta and the stakeholders involved in it. The next two chapters present an overview of the pesticides and antibiotics used in breeding the shrimp. Although these methods improve breeding efficiency they usually also have a negative effect on both the environment and the consumer and are therefore a threat to the future of shrimp farming. The importance of biomarkers in keeping these effects under control is thus self-evident. The following chapters deal with diverse biomarkers in a rigorously scientific way. The thesis ends with a critical analysis of the various biomarkers and their practical and economic feasibility and offers a number of recommendations for future research.
Dr. Huynh puts it as follows: “Thus our results could be used as reference to undertake future research aimed to assess the health of shrimp exposed to xenobiotics.” This is, however, a little too modest, for quite a number of results are already practicable.
Dr. Huynh’s thesis is a fine example of how a well-conceived sandwich doctorate can lead to results relevant to developing countries.
report: Prof. emeritus E. Schockaert, Centre for Environmental Sciences, Universiteit Hasselt, Belgium