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K-State Today

August 8, 2013



Entomologist part of winning international team

By John Ruberson

KSU Entomologist Brian McCornack

Brian McCornack, assistant professor of entomology, is part of the Global CSI Team, with Jonathan Marshall of Bondi Labs in Australia and others, that has been awarded the 2013 Inclusive Innovators Challenge by the Business for Millennium Development, or B4MD, an Australia-based not-for-profit organization. 

Business for Millennium Development invited teams from leading institutions, companies, and nongovernment organizations throughout Australia to compete at the Australian Business Congress in Sydney, Australia, in August to pitch new inclusive business concepts — scalable, commercially viable ways of working with low-income people to develop communities.

This two-day event attracted more than 1,100 senior corporate professionals who were seeking new ways to grow or reinvent their businesses. The team’s "Plant Doctor Game" was selected based on its ability to meet Millennium Development Goals. The "Plant Doctor Game" is a serious educational video game that will be playable on low-end mobile devices and is designed to develop and improve core plant health diagnostic skills of agricultural extension workers in developing countries.

Initially, the game is intended to complement the current face-to-face plant-doctor training program but is moving toward scalable, comprehensive training modules. Through this award, Business for Millennium Development will offer their services to help the Global CSI Team to develop its business model and leverage its global network as the team continues development of the serious game.