CIDAT: Collection and dissemination of knowledge
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CTA. 1987. CIDAT: Collection and dissemination of knowledge. Spore 8. CTA, Wageningen, The Netherlands.
Permanent link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/10568/44623
Belgium has accumulated considerable experience in tropical agriculture over the years. This is the fruit of work carried out in research centres in its former African colonies and in other parts of the world where Belgian experts have been...
Belgium has accumulated considerable experience in tropical agriculture over the years. This is the fruit of work carried out in research centres in its former African colonies and in other parts of the world where Belgian experts have been involved in agricultural development. To take advantage of this rich experience the Belgian Ministry of Education decided to establish, in 1970, the Centre for Applied Information on Tropical Agricultural Development, shouldered jointly by the Albert I Royal Library and by the Royal Museum of Central Africa and supported by the Fund for Fundamental and Collective Research. The Centre also benefits from scientific and technical assistance from CNDST (National Centre for Scientific and Technical Documentation). ClDAT's objectives are manifold. First and foremost, the centre focusses on the inventory and the preservation of scientific achievements of Belgian experts in the field of tropical agriculture so that less developed countries may benefit from this wide experience. Within this perspective ClDAT develops techniques for the comparative study of agrobioclimatic characteristics to facilitate the transfer of technologies, cropping techniques and plant species while evaluating the risks involved. CIDAT also advises individuals and organizations who wish to adopt this development approach. It attempts to promote the introduction of new varieties by acting as a link between national research centres, development agencies and gene banks. CIDAT publishes the results of the applied research undertaken. In Belgium, the centre serves as a focal point both for Belgian agronomists working abroad and for graduate students in agronomy preparing to work overseas. In order to meet these objectives, CIDAT has been set up as four independent panels working on the following topics: agroclimatology, soil science and management, ecology and plant introduction as well as data processing. Each panel is headed by an agronomist who has made his career overseas with an experience of at least ten consecutive years both in the field of research and applied agronomy. This type of organization facilitates individual contacts as inquiries emanate from related experience and relevant context. The inquiries received at the centre are steadily increasing and more than twenty-five percent are from abroad. They come from private companies (20%), higher education (60 %) and governmental or international institutions (20 %) The centre mainly received inquiries on the following subjects, in order of importance: crop production, agroclimatology (CIDAT has a data bank of 58,000 entries), documentation, economic analysis, soil science, physical geography, food supply, forestry technology, fish farming, animal husbandry, seed supply and plant ecology. As far as the inquiry service is concerned, CIDAT collaborates closely with SERDAT, the Documentation Service for Tropical Agriculture that belongs to the Royal Albert I Library. There are regular joint activities and exchanges between the two centres, in particular for the purchase of publications to rationalize expenditure. CIDAT publishes the results of the activities and research in a series of six editions: - 'Thesauri', a series mainly concerned with information processing (three publications) - 'Bulletin for research in comparative agrobioclimatology'(two publications) - 'Studies on tropical wood' (two publications) - 'Abstracts' (six publications) - 'World catalogue of climatic date' (nine publications) - 'Miscellaneous' (two publications) All these publications, as well as copies of miscellaneous reports and articles published in periodicals of other organizations, are available from: Patrimoine du Musee Royal de l'Afrique Centrale. CIDAT Musee Royal de l'Afrique Centrale Chaussee de Louvain B - 1980 Tervuren Belgium