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By Bradford Mills

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Extra info for Agricultural Research Priority Setting: Information Investments for the Improved Use of Research Resources

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2. They are supported by measures that credibly discriminate between research alternatives. The most commonly used criteria for agricultural research priority setting are efficiency, equity, sustainability, food self-sufficiency, food security, foreign exchange, and public good. Efficiency The efficiency criterion relates to the impact of research on societal welfare. The primary goal of agricultural research is often to improve the welfare of citizens. Because resources for research are limited, they must be allocated to generate the largest possible benefits for both agricultural producers and consumers.

The first component is best addressed through agricultural market policies. , soil and water management or agronomic technologies to reduce production variability in marginal environments). Like equity, the food-security criterion must be clearly defined as a trade-off with efficiency in its differential targeting of specific groups. Foreign exchange Perhaps the most diffuse of all these criteria is research’s contribution to increasing foreign exchange earnings. In liberalized economies with free exchange rates, it is not clear exactly how, or why, foreign exchange earnings contribute to agricultural research organizations’ objectives differently from other earnings.

When conducted as one-time events by large teams of researchers and extension agents, the information collected may have little influence on perceived research needs. 1. The Use of Participatory Rural Appraisals by the Katumani Regional Research Program The mandate of the Katumani regional research program is to develop improved agricultural technologies for farming systems in five districts. Agroecological conditions vary greatly in these districts. So as a first step in the priority-setting process, five relatively homogeneous agroecological zones were identified.

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