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Archival description
Records of the Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research (CGIAR)
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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.

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