Get to know the ECRLF Fellows: Dr. Nicolas Kagimu

When Dr. Kagimu talks about nematology, you are transported on a journey that makes you start to appreciate the diverse group of roundworms that occur worldwide in virtually every environment. One thing he does very well is explaining how beneficial nematodes are to agriculture and the environment. Dr Kagimu claims that nematodes are the best alternative approach in the biological control of crop pests, contribute to soil fertility and are eco-friendly and cost-effective. 

His passion for nematology was sparked in his early years of study in Horticulture. He realized that plant parasitic nematodes were posing a serious threat to the agriculture export market causing serious damage to valuable crops. He went on to study how improvement of liquid storage of the entomopathogenic nematodes (EPNs) could be used in biocontrol of various agricultural insect pests. Fascinated by this discovery, he embarked on developing a formulation for EPNs commercialisation during his PhD. According to Dr. Kagimu, research around the production and commercialisation of nematodes as biocontrol agents in South Africa has been going on for over a decade. 

When Dr. Kagimu was referred to the ECRLF fellowship call by a friend, he thought it would be the ideal programme to further his research interests given the research support and facilities made available through this opportunity. This was not an easy decision because of personal circumstances which he had to overcome in order to qualify for the programme. He believes that the benefit of being on the programme far outweighed the sacrifices he had to make.

Dr. Kagimu, believes that the skills and experience he is building through the programmes will give him the extra edge. This will come in very handy in his quest to try and secure a permanent position in a University back in his home country, Uganda, or elsewhere as a researcher. His message to young people is that they should follow their hearts while choosing academic fields that interests them.