GRET Appropriate Technologies for Developing Countries
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CTA. 1986. GRET Appropriate Technologies for Developing Countries. Spore 4. CTA, Wageningen, The Netherlands.
Permanent link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/10568/44509
The Group for Research and Technological Exchange (GRET) was created ten years ago by french development workers who wanted to work outside the rigid structure of established development programmes. They chose to concentrate on scientific and...
The Group for Research and Technological Exchange (GRET) was created ten years ago by french development workers who wanted to work outside the rigid structure of established development programmes. They chose to concentrate on scientific and technical information transfer. In this field, whether it be water extraction, cereal milling or soil preparation, GRET attempts to study the entire spectrum of applicable technologies. GRET believes that the greater the number of potential techniques, the greater the chances of finding an appropriate solution. This pluralistic approach is applied to all of GRET's work. After having established a system of 'technical fact sheets', which has subsequently been expanded, GRET started producing a series of publications in 1984 designed to provide an 'update' on existing technological alternatives. While the fact sheets were designed to provide basic information that could lead to further study, the updates were designed to provide as complete a document as possible on a given subject (see page 11). Some of these publications, of which average distribution reaches a thousand copies, are being translated into English, Spanish and Portuguese. The dissemination of such scientific and technological information implies that it is available in the first place. GRET has thus developed a documentation centre (open to the public) that is particularly rich in unpublished or poorly circulated literature such as technical reports. Its establishment and maintenance would not be possible without close relations with both development projects and research organizations. GRET's location in the same building as ORSTOM greatly facilitates the latter. GRET also maintains close contact with CIRAD (International Centre of Agronomic Research for Development). This scientific grouping enables GRET to use the results of such research in its development projects. This is the case for several research and development programmes on agriculture being implemented in Ethiopia, Tanzania, the Comores and the Lesser Antilles. All of these projects are based at a local university or agricultural extension organisation and considerable emphasis is given to the training of managerial staff in rural areas. This process enabled the organisation of a seminar last year in the Caribbean, on agricultural production systems and development alternatives with the University of Antilles-Guyana. For GRET, each project exists not only for itself but also plays a role in the accumulation of experience and education that can be used for other development projects and programmes. That is why considerable importance is given to the critical use of results or lessons to be learned from each project. This is particularly true of the 40 or more development activities that GRET is directly involved with, but it is also true of other non-governmental or governmental projects which GRET makes more widely known through publications or audio-visual kits. GRET: Groupe de Recherche et d'Echanges Technologiques. 213, rue La Fayette, 7510 PARIS.