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Records of the Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research (CGIAR) Reeks Engels
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Video recordings

The annual meeting of the CGIAR sponsors and centers is routinely videotaped. Normally these tapes are destroyed once the verbatim transcript of the meeting is produced. For especially significant meetings, however, the videotapes are preserved; the two meetings that fall into this category are the Ministerial level meeting on CGIAR reform and renewal held in Lucerne, Switzerland, in February 1995, and the twenty-fifth anniversary meeting held in 1996. The twenty-fifth anniversary program was taped in full, including sessions, panel discussions, a parallel session on genetics resources conservation, exhibitions, and the concluding press conference.

On the occasion of its twenty-fifth anniversary, CGIAR taped a number of interviews with individuals important in its history, both persons who worked at CGIAR and international agricultural scientists. It also produced videos titled CGIAR: The first 25 years and Serving the world through science: An introduction to the CGIAR. In the process it shot and acquired both stock footage of its operations, particularly in Ethiopia, and finished productions on topics ranging from rice to farming in Rwanda.

A few other videotaped interviews, speeches, and press conferences have been retained, including interviews with Nobel Prize winner Norman Borlaug, several speeches by CGIAR chairman Ismail Serageldin, and footage of the mid-term meeting in New Delhi in 1994.

United States Agency for International Development (USAID) CGIAR files

The series consists of records created and collected by the Associate Director (Research), Office of Agriculture, Technical Advisory Bureau, of the US Agency for International Development (USAID). The majority of the records relate to the first five years of the CGIAR. The series contains two types of files: chronological correspondence files and files relating to specific meetings and conferences.

The correspondence files are exclusively related to communication between USAID and the CGIAR Secretariat. Subjects of the correspondence include: International Agricultural Research Centers (IARC) appraisal, IARC financial practices and policy, and deliberations on and accounting of USAID funding. Records include: CGIAR meeting summary of proceedings; reports authored by the CGIAR's Technical Advisory Committee (TAC); CGIAR reports and records distributed to member countries for informational purposes; and materials related to International Centers Week (ICW). A small amount of correspondence sent within USAID departments on the topic of the CGIAR is also included in these files.

The majority of records relating to meeting or conference attendance relate to CGIAR's annual ICW meetings. A number of other USAID-CGIAR meetings are represented as are meetings of the CGIAR North American donors. Further, meetings relating to agricultural research that do not directly involve CGIAR but which are attended by USAID representatives are also present in small number. Records relating to meetings or conferences attended by USAID representatives include meeting agendas, minutes, summary of proceedings, and supporting documents. Also included are meeting and conference summaries authored by USAID attendees as part of their reporting responsibilities. A small number of Action Memoranda composed in response to issues raised and the subsequent need for deliberation are also included.

Third System Review

The series consists of records related to CGIAR's Third System Review conducted in 1996-1998. The Review's purpose was to assess the role, relevance and future directions of the CGIAR System and make recommendations for improving its overall effectiveness. Its focus included, but was not limited to:

  • Mission and strategy: mission, scientific orientation, goals, principal activities, priorities, and strategies of the System

  • Governance and finance: roles and responsibilities of System-wide units, System-level management processes (priority setting, resource allocation, evaluation); funding modalities

  • Operational effectiveness: quality, relevance, and efficiency of the science practiced by the centers; partnerships; structural considerations.

The Review was conducted by an external panel which was supported by separate Working Groups and facilitated by a secretariat. The series contains Review Panel meeting minutes along with extensive background readings and other supporting materials. Indexes for meeting-related materials are included. Series also contains correspondence related to the System Review. Correspondence relates to the selection of Panel and Working Group members as well as meeting and conference planning and requests for comments on Review-generated reports. The series also contains a file of reports commissioned by the Review Panel as well reports created or collected by the Panel. Finally, the series contains a copy of the Review's final report, The International Research Partnership forFood Security and Sustainable Agriculture, dated October 8, 1998. A draft of the final paper by the Specialist Panel on Governance and Finance (August 24, 1998) is also included.

Publications of international agricultural research centers

This series contains publications acquired from international agricultural research centers for the CGIAR CD-ROM publication project Compact International Agricultural Research Library - Basic Retrospective Set (CIARL - BRS). A few publications from the Rockefeller and Ford Foundations, which provide important support for the centers, also are included. Not all of the publications in this series ultimately were reproduced on the CD-ROM.

The purpose of the CD-ROM publication was to provide a resource on agriculture for developing countries. CGIAR solicited the publications from the research centers, the centers made the first selection on relevance to the purpose of the publication, and the CGIAR project staff made the final determinations.

The publications selected include guidelines, instructional manuals, studies, handbook, directories, monographs, annual reports, and proceedings of internal symposia and workshops, among others. Duplicate copies of some of these publications are found in the CGIAR Central Files, particularly in file categories G and H. The publications reflect the state-of-the art of agricultural research at the time they were published. Taken together with the Central Files, they illuminate the research emphases of the centers, showing changing attitudes toward, for example, environmental issues, small farmers, and various species of plants and animals. The series as a whole provides a worldwide overview of agricultural research.

International Agricultural Research Centers (IARC) reports

Series consists of records created by the CGIAR's International Agricultural Research Centers (IARC) and which relate to their financial, operational, and reporting responsibilities. The series includes records from two IARCs: the International Livestock Centre for Africa (ILCA), based in Ethiopia, and the International Laboratory for Research on Animal Diseases (ILRAD), based in Kenya. In 1994, the two programs merged to form the International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI) which based itself in Kenya.

ILCA records include: materials related to the origins of the ILCA, including a report entitled Final Report of the Initial Stage of the Proposal for the Establishment of the International Livestock Centre for Africa (ILCA) (1975); conference materials, including conference papers; ILCA authored and commissioned reports; annual reports (1981-1994); the ILCA Staff Regulations and Rules (January, 1980); reports related to long term planning and strategies; ILCA Board of Trustees meeting agendas, minutes, and supporting material; ILCA Board of Trustees Handbook (undated) and Rules of Procedure (1983); financial statements, budget statements, Auditors' Report and Accounts reports (1975-1987), and Programme and Budget reports (1975-1988); board appointments records; the ILCA Bulletin (1978-1989); the ILCA Newsletter (1982-1991); other related newsletters; external management reviews; ILCA Directors' statements; and International Centers Week (ICW) presentations.

ILRAD records include: ILCA authored reports; Programme and Budget reports (1974-1986); annual reports (1980, 1986-1994) and Annual Scientific Reports (1987-1993); board appointments records; reports related to medium and long term planning; annual accounts (1974-1988); minutes of the first meeting of the ILRAD Board of Trustees (November 26-27, 1973); external management reviews; and financial statements and audit reports.

Compact International Agricultural Research Library project files

In the late 1980s the Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research became interested in finding a means to distribute current agricultural research information more effectively. The Group contracted for a study of the issue and then contracted for a prototype of a CD-ROM publication and distribution system. Following the production and evaluation of the prototype, a full-scale CD-ROM publication was initiated, containing publications from nineteen international agricultural research centers plus the Ford and Rockefeller Foundations. The final CD-ROM set, called the Compact International Agricultural Research Library - Basic Retrospective Set (CIARL-BRS), was a single master disc that contained the catalogue and synopticon records and sixteen text-image discs that contained the documents from the centers. They were accompanied by a paper A-Z Reference Guide in English, French, and Spanish, and a Tutorial Guide.

This series consists of the background records of the project; the contracts with each center for use of its publications; contracts for the studies, the production of the CD-ROMs, and the translations of the paper publications; record of the preparation of the paper publications and master copies of them; correspondence with the evaluation sites and the advisory committee; and records related to the marketing of the final CD-ROM set. The records are essential to understand the authorized uses of the publications from the centers.

The records reflect CGIAR's effort to preserve and disseminate the bountiful research information that was being produced by the centers. As an early CD-ROM project, it also provides a miniature study of the developmental steps that were required; for example, the project had not intended to create a paper Tutorial, but the users had difficulty with the unfamiliar CD-ROM technology so a Tutorial was devised. While the project staff hoped that the CIARL-BRS would be the first of many editions of the CD-ROM, website technology soon replaced CD-ROMs for CGIAR distribution purposes and no further editions were produced.

Committee of Center Board Chairpersons (CBC) meeting files

The series primarily consists of CBC meeting agendas, minutes, and supporting materials for meetings held between 1987 and 1991. Included with the materials for the CBC meeting held on October 25 and 26, 1990, is an attachment entitled CBC Corporate Memory which includes a summary of CBC meetings and meeting activities, subjects, and decisions for meetings held between 1985 and 1990.

The series also contains records related to Board surveys conducted by two of the International Agricultural Research Centers (IARC) represented on the CDC: the International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA) and the International Livestock Centre for Africa (ILCA). A small amount of other informational material is also included.

Chairman's chronological correspondence files

Series consists of chronological correspondence files of CGIAR Chairman Ismail Serageldin. Records provide evidence of fund-raising, communications, and public relations activities as well as activities related to CGIAR organizational and committee management. The majority of the records in this series are copies of the Chairman's outgoing mail. Letters are addressed to CGIAR member and potential member representatives (primarily ambassadors and agriculture ministers), CGIAR committees, International Agricultural Research Centers (IARC), and other agricultural research institutes and universities. Topics of correspondence include CGIAR membership, fund-raising and donations, meetings, CGIAR projects and initiatives, committee nominations and appointments, the Chairman's travel and visitation, conference attendance, speaking engagements, and IARC research, funding, and management.

Central files

This series is the key record of the first fifteen years of the history of CGIAR. All of the efforts to create the organization are documented, as are the general meetings held once or twice a year, the CGIAR staff liaison with the members and donors, the work of the Technical Advisory Committee (as the Science Council was called during those years), and the periodic reviews of the CGIAR program.

Other important records in the series are those in file category G, records of the international agricultural research centers. A set of files exists for each center, containing correspondence with and about the center, records of periodic reviews, appointments, projects and work plans, budgets and financing, and publications. These are an excellent source for the history of agricultural research and the choices made to support or not support a particular research emphasis. Files also exist on associated centers and programs that were not part of the core institutions supported by CGIAR. These files are not as extensive as those relating to the CGIAR centers, but they contain useful information on institutions such as the International Soybean Resource Base (INTSOY) and the International Agricultural Development Services (IADS).

Also included in the series are speeches, addresses and outgoing memos and letters of S. Shahid Husain as Chairman of CGIAR, 1984 - 1987.

Center Directors Committee (CDC) meeting and informational files

The series consists of records that evidence the relationship between the CGIAR Secretariat and the International Agricultural Research Centers' (IARC) Directors and the Center Directors Committee (CDC). The majority of the records in the series are informational reports and other materials forwarded, most commonly, by the CGIAR Executive Secretary to CDC members. These records include topical reports, CGIAR-authored reports, CGIAR-related external publications, and CGIAR project and initiative updates. Some records also relate to the recruitment of new CGIAR members/donors. Series also consist of reports authored by the CDC or CDC members as well as a small amount of CDC meeting agendas and minutes.

CGIAR's International Agricultural Research Centers (IARC) general files

The series consists of records created and received by the CGIAR Secretariat as a result of its ongoing relationship with the International Agricultural Research Centers (IARC). The series contains records relating to three of the IARCs: the International Livestock Centre for Africa (ILCA), the International Laboratory for Research on Animal Diseases (ILRAD), and the International Network for the Improvement of Banana and Plantain (INIBAP). These IARCs no longer exist; in 1994, INIBAP was absorbed into theInternational Plant Genetic Resources Institute (IPGRI, renamed Bioversity International in 2006) and, in the same year, the ILAC and ILRAD merged and formed the International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI).

Records related to the ILRAD include: correspondence between the CGIAR Chairman and ILRAD; schedule of the Chairman's visit to ILRAD and other IARCs; position search and announcements; ILRAD Board of Directors annual meeting agenda (1989); correspondence and announcements concerning funding disbursements; external reviews; survey of ILRAD board members; Director General's report to the ILRAD Board of Directors (1990); and other materials.

Records related to ILCA include: correspondence between the CGIAR Chairman and ILCA; schedule of the Chairman's visit to ILCA and other IARCs; ILCA newsletters; ILCA Board of Trustees meeting minutes; ILCA Board orientation program materials; correspondence and announcements concerning funding disbursements; external reviews; ILCA board member surveys; an ILCA-authored paper entitled Management Information Requirements at ILCA: A Discussion Paper (1987); annual meeting and other committee meeting minutes; and other materials.

Records related to INIBAP include: correspondence between the CGIAR Chairman and INIBAP; INIBAP strategy document (1991); International Musa Testing Program materials; collaborative research agreements; INIBAP workshop materials; program committee reports; position search and announcements; INIBAP program surveys; Board of Trustees meeting minutes; Donor Support Group meeting minutes and supporting materials; budget proposal (1992); an initial offer of support by the CGIAR Chairman to INIBAP (21 November, 1990) and related materials; external reviews; and other materials. Records related to INIBAP's absorption into INGRI are also contained in this series. These include: records from the 1993 meeting in which the incorporation of INIBAP and INGRI was discussed and the Memorandum of Understanding between INIBAP and INGRI.