Accomplishment and Future Challenges in Dryland Soil Fertility Research in the Mediterranean Area
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Ryan, J. (ed. ). 1997. Accomplishments and Future Challenges in Dryland Soil Fertility Research in the Mediterranean Area. Proceedings of the Soil Fertility Workshop, Institut Mondial du Phosphate (IMPHOS) and ICARDA, 19-23 November 1995, Aleppo, Syria. ICARDA, Aleppo, Syria, ix + 368 pp.
The papers presented in this volume represent the proceedings of the Soil Fertility Meeting at Tel Hadya during 19-23 November 1995. That meeting was, in essence, a continuation of the previous Soil Test Calibration workshops held in Aleppo (1988), Ankara (1987), Amman (1988), and Agadir (1991). The meeting was a turning point in the W ANA dryland soil fertility research. The terms of reference for the participants were to review and take stock of what had been accomplished in soil fertility research and to look to the future and assess what needs to be done. The meeting agenda represented a large degree of success in both endeavors. New issues to be addressed included a holistic concept of soil fertility as reflected in rotation trials; the use of N-IS to elucidate the dynamics of supplemental irrigation; the use of P in rangelands; assessment of micronutrient stress in terms of deficiency and toxicity; breeding to adapt crops to nutrient stresses, assessment of soil tests and laboratory management, practical considerations for soil fertility trials; aspects of soil fertility education; and economic assessment of fertilizer use policy. The meeting differed from previous ones in that a considerable part of the program was devoted to group discussion. The meeting was also characterized by the diversity of participants. In addition to a cross-section of ICARDA scientists from several programs and representatives of Syrian institutions and 13 other W ANA countries including Ministries of Agriculture and universities, the meeting attracted several international institutes: Food and Agriculture Organization, International Potash Institute, and International Atomic Energy Agency, and the co-sponsor, Institut Mondial du Phosphate. The papers in this volume have been edited for style and content; most have been shortened from the original versions. For considerations of expediency and costs, the abridged manuscript were not returned to the authors. However, in a few instances where serious concerns were evident, the respective authors were contacted for revision. Any misrepresentation of the authors' intentions is my responsibility. In addition, as there was considerable variation in the manuscripts with respect to length and content, I have relegated some papers to short communications. For considerations of space, I have condensed the questions and answers section and the rapporteurs' reports from the discussion groups into a short overview of what was needed for the future. While the papers were not refereed in the conventional sense, it is hoped that the volume with meet acceptable international standards for such proceedings and will make a valuable benchmark reference to soil fertility research in the W ANA region. In that context, I have included a guest review article on a topic of direct relevance to the region -- the author in question was unable to attend the meeting. The volume should be instrumental in assisting us obtain funding for future collaborative research between ICARDA and the various national soil fertility and agronomy research programs.
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