Who We Are

An interdisciplinary team of experts, early career scholars, practitioners passionate about this topic

The platform is hosted within the School of Environmental Design and Rural Development at the Ontario Agriculture College, University of Guelph. It is currently led by Dr. Ataharul Chowdhury. The platform includes research and post-doctoral fellows, graduate and undergraduate students, as well as practitioners interested in the fields of misinformation in agri-food, climate change, and rural development issues. Some members work closely with Dr. Chowdhury on this topic, while others collaborate on various activities. The affiliates are scholars and practitioners from different organizations who wish to contribute to this platform.

Our Team

Dr. Ataharul Chowdhury

Dr. Chowdhury has over sixteen years of experience in agricultural science, extension education, communication and innovation studies, and rural and regional development in both Canada and abroad.
His expertise and academic background intersect in the sub-fields of agricultural science, extension education, communication and innovation studies, and rural and regional development.



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Research and Post-doctoral Fellows

Dr. Khondokar Humayun Kabir

Khondokar Humayun Kabir has worked in agricultural extension and education as a researcher and practitioner for the past 10 years. He studies a bachelor’s in agriculture and master’s in agricultural extension education from Bangladesh Agricultural University, Mymensingh.
He is currently working as a postdoctoral fellow at the School of Environmental Design and Rural Development, University of Guelph, Canada. Kabir has a doctoral degree from the department of rural sociology, the institute of social sciences in agriculture, University of Hohenheim, Germany. He conducted a research project funded by DAAD: German Academic Exchange Services on:
He took part in modules related to research methodology in different universities in Germany. He has advanced skills in SPSS, Atlas-ti software, PQ-method software, and basic skills in ‘NVivo’ and ‘r’ software.



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Dr. Nasir Abbas Khan

Dr. Nasir Abbas Khan is a postdoctoral fellow at the School of Environmental Design and Rural Development, University of Guelph, Canada, and has recently received the prestigious Banting Postdoctoral Fellowship in the 2022-23 competition and will work with his current adviser, Dr. Ataharul Chowdhury, during the fellowship tenure. Dr. Khan has a doctoral degree in rural development from China Agricultural University, Beijing, China, and a master’s degree in agricultural extension education from the University of Agriculture Faisalabad, Pakistan. Dr. Khan works on the nexus of information and communication technologies (ICTs), climate change adaptation, and rural livelihoods.  Specifically, he studies rural livelihoods’ vulnerabilities to climate change risks by exploring farm-level adoption of climate-smart agriculture technologies and adaptation strategies. His research particularly investigates the institutional dimension of climate change governance, where he evaluates the role of advisory support (including digital extension) and institutional preparedness in providing risk management support to rural communities. Nasir has expertise in microeconometric analysis to study complex rural development issues using various regression and impact assessment models. During his PhD, he worked on assessing climate change adaptation and governance in rural Pakistan, funded by the China Scholarship Council (CSC).
Before joining the University of Guelph in June 2023, he was a postdoc fellow at the Nanjing University of Information Science and Technology, Nanjing, China, during 2021-2023, where he worked on ICTs and climate change governance. He also held another role as a Guest Researcher at the Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing, China, between 2021 and 2023. Along with these positions, Nasir has also been working with the International Poverty Reduction Centre China (IPRCC) as a researcher during his PhD, where he worked on exploring community development programs in developing nations. He has also been involved in various rural development projects in China, where he had the opportunity to survey several model villages in five provinces of China.
Nasir’s current research focuses on climate change and social inequality, climate misinformation in the agri-food context, pluralistic agricultural extension and advisory services, digitalization in advisory services, social media, and climate-smart agriculture.
Nasir has a great interest in joining this platform as he is passionate about the issues that affect socially marginalized communities around the world, whether they are related to climate disasters or risks of polarization and rising misinformation; therefore, he has a keen interest in resolving them by advocating the use of contemporary media and social learning platforms like this. He is working with Dr. Ataharul Chowdhury on a number of projects and initiatives as part of his post-doctoral position at SEDRD.



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Doctoral Researchers

Amina Asfour

Amina is a PhD student in the Rural Studies program at the University of Guelph, with the aim of contributing towards linking science to humanitarian interventions, ensuring that maximum benefit is achieved through creating evidence-based solutions.

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Uduak Edet

Uduak Edet’s research interests include climate change misinformation as well as climate smart investments and finance. Her current research examines the influence of climate change misinformation on farmers’ ability to adapt to climate change in Northern Nigeria.

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Graduate Students

Edward Kusi Asafo-Agyei

Mr. Edward Kusi Asafo-Agyei, is an agriculture policy development and extension professional whose extensive background and unwavering commitment to advancing the agricultural landscape makes him a beacon of knowledge and insight, particularly within Sub-Saharan African context. Mr. Asafo-Agyei holds a prominent position at the intersection of academia and practical experience, with a rich tapestry of qualifications and achievements, he is at the forefront of unraveling the intricate web of agricultural policy misinformation in Ghana.

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Hadis Azizi

Hadis Azizi is pursuing her master’s degree in Capacity Development & Extension at the University of Guelph, after acquiring a BEng in Agricultural Extension & Education at the University of Tehran.

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Kasuni Sachithra

Kasuni Sachithra’s current research focuses on online Communities of Practice, knowledge sharing, learning, and misinformation’s impact.

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Sultana Yeasmin

Sultana’s current research focuses on “Influence of misinformation on participation of young people with disabilities in agriculture in Bangladesh”. It explores how people with disabilities (PWDs) suffer from discrimination, social stigma, and misinformation, which makes them less confident and frustrated about life and leave them as unproductive.

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Research Affiliates

Dr. Sonia Goel

Dr Sonia Goel has done PhD in Biotechnology while working at National Institute on Plant Biotechnology, Indian council of Agricultural research (ICAR), Delhi, India.
She has served as associate professor and Head of the department Genetics and Plant breeding, SGT University, Gurugram, India.

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Dr. Jeet Ramjattan

Dr. Ramjattan is an Agricultural Extension Agent with 21 years of experience in both the public and private sectors. He has an academic and practical background in agriculture and extension, having received his Diploma in Agriculture from the Eastern Caribbean Institute of Agriculture and Forestry in 1995 and a BSc. in General Agriculture from the University of the West Indies (U.W.I) in 2010. Following that, he received his MPhil.

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Md. Kamruzzaman

Md Kamruzzaman is a PhD student at the Fenner School of Environment and Society and Institute for Water Futures at the Australian National University, Australia.

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