Glossary | 287

farmers and other stakeholders along the food chain are
involved with researchers in the selection of varieties
from formal and farmer-based collections and trials, to
determine which are best suited to their own agroeco-
systems' needs, uses and preferences, and which should
go ahead for finishing, wider release and dissemination.
The information gathered may in turn be fed back into
formal-led breeding programs.
Pesticide A toxic chemical or biological product that kills
organisms   (e.g.,   insecticides,   fungicides,   weedicides,
Poverty There are many definitions of poverty.
Absolute Poverty: According to a UN declaration that re-
sulted from the World Summit on Social Development
in 1995, absolute poverty is a condition characterized by
severe deprivation of basic human needs, including food,
safe drinking water, sanitation facilities, health, shelter,
education and information. It depends not only on in-
come but also on access to services.
Dimensions of Poverty: The individual and social charac-
teristics of poverty such as lack of access to health and
education, powerlessness or lack of dignity. Such aspects
of deprivation experienced by the individual or group are
not captured by measures of income or expenditure.
Extreme Poverty: Persons who fall below the defined poverty
line of US$1 income per day. The measure is converted
into local currencies using purchasing power parity (PPP)
exchange rates. Other definitions of this concept have
identified minimum subsistence requirements, the denial
of basic human rights or the experience of exclusion.
Poverty Line: A minimum requirement of welfare, usu-
ally defined in relation to income or expenditure, used
to identify the poor. Individuals or households with in-
comes or expenditure below the poverty line are poor.
Those with incomes or expenditure equal to or above the
line are not poor. It is common practice to draw more
than one poverty line to distinguish different categories
of poor, for example, the extreme poor.
Private Rate of Return The gain in net revenue to the private
firm/business divided by the cost of an investment ex-
pressed in percentage.
Processes A   series   of   actions,   motions,   occurrences,   a
method, mode, or operation, whereby a result or effect
is produced.
Production Technology All methods that farmers, market
agents and consumers use to cultivate, harvest, store,
process, handle, transport and prepare food crops, cash
crops, livestock, etc. for consumption.
Protected Area A geographically defined area which is desig-
nated or regulated and managed to achieve specific con-
servation objectives as defined by society.
Public Goods A good or service in which the benefit received
by any one party does not diminish the availability of
the benefits to others, and/or where access to the good
cannot be restricted. Public goods have the properties of
non-rivalry in consumption and non-excludability.
Public R&D Investment Includes R&D investments done by
government agencies, nonprofit institutions, and higher-
education  agencies.  It  excludes  the  private  for-profit
Research and Development (R&D) Organizational strategies


and methods used by research and extension program to
conduct their work including scientific procedures, orga-
nizational modes, institutional strategies, interdisciplin-
ary team research, etc.
Scenario A plausible and often simplified description of how
the future may develop based on explicit and coherent
and internally consistent set of assumptions about key
driving forces (e.g., rate of technology change, prices)
and relationships. Scenarios are neither predictions nor
projections and sometimes may be based on a "narra-
tive storyline". Scenarios may be derived from projec-
tions but are often based on additional information from
other sources.
Science, Technology and Innovation Includes all forms of
useful knowledge (codified and tacit) derived from di-
verse branches of learning and practice, ranging from ba-
sic scientific research to engineering to local knowledge.
It also includes the policies used to promote scientific
advance, technology development, and the commercial-
ization of products, as well as the associated institutional
innovations. Science refers to both basic and applied sci-
ences. Technology refers to the application of science, en-
gineering, and other fields, such as medicine. Innovation
includes all of the processes, including business activities
that bring a technology to market.
Shifting Cultivation Found mainly in the tropics, especially in
humid and subhumid regions. There are different kinds;
for example, in some cases a settlement is permanent, but
certain fields are fallowed and cropped alternately ("ro-
tational agriculture"). In other cases, new land is cleared
when the old is no longer productive.
Slash and Burn Agriculture A pattern of agriculture in which
existing vegetation is cleared and burned to provide space
and nutrients for cropping.
Social Rate of Return The gain to society of a project or in-
vestment in net revenue divided by cost of the investment,
expressed by percentage.
Soil and Water Conservation (SWC) A combination of ap-
propriate technology and successful approach. Technolo-
gies promote the sustainable use of agricultural soils by
minimizing soil erosion, maintaining and/or enhancing
soil properties, managing water, and controlling tem-
perature. Approaches explain the ways and means which
are used to realize SWC in a given ecological and socio-
economic environment.
Soil Erosion The detachment and movement of soil from the
land surface by wind and water in conditions influenced
by human activities.
Soil Function Any service, role, or task that a soil performs,
especially:   (a)   sustaining  biological  activity,  diversity,
and productivity; (b) regulating and partitioning water
and solute flow; (c) filtering, buffering, degrading, and
detoxifying potential pollutants; (d) storing and cycling
nutrients; (e) providing support for buildings and other
structures and to protect archaeological treasures.
Staple Food (Crops) Food that is eaten as daily diet.
Soil Quality The capacity of a specific kind of soil to function,
within natural or managed ecosystem boundaries, to sus-
tain plant and animal productivity, maintain or enhance
water and air quality, and support human health and
habitation. In short, the capacity of the soil to function.