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Portugal - ARD country profile

Portugal - ARD country profile

Agricultural Research for Development (ARD) in Portugal is shared by several ministries operating relevant public research institutes and foundations. The country's approach revolves around internationalising the Portuguese scientific and technological system, and more generally, promoting international and interdisciplinary generation of agricultural knowledge.

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Key ARD objectives

  • Promotion of environmentally sustainable production systems and resource use.
  • A strong focus in the Community of Portuguese Speaking Countries (CPLP).
  • Solutions for smallscale farmers and family farms.
  • Reinforcement of food security and the fight against poverty.
  • Use of participatory approaches to research.

Summary

ARD in Portugal is spread across multiple ministries and their public research institutes and foundations. Many activities are planned and developed by the Tropical Research Institute (IICT) together with Portuguese universities under the Ministry of Science, Technology & Higher Education, and by the National Institute for Biological Resources (INRB) under the Ministry of Agriculture, Rural Development and Fisheries.

Portugal's approach is based on internationalising national science and technology in support of development goals, as well as a more general support for interdisciplinary and international agricultural research. This is particularly focused within Portuguese-speaking countries.

Support for this internationalisation comes from the Portuguese Institute for Development (IPAD) under the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, as well as from the Foundation for Science and Technology (FCT), and IICT within the framework of the Ministry of Science, Technology and Higher Education. This includes support for scientists and NGOs working multilaterally, international research organisations, and joint projects based on science and technology cooperation or bilateral agreements with other countries.

Main ARD budget and beneficiaries for 2010

Contributors

IPAD € 1,214,085
DREBM/FCT € 450,000
IICT € 13,000

Recipients

Developing country ministries and research institutes € 689,507
Portuguese institutions and NGOs € 479,578
CGIAR € 450,000
Union of Portuguese-Speaking Capital Cities (UCCLA) € 45,000
Agrinatura € 13,000

Geographic focus

Portuguese-speaking African countries € 1,118,091
Asia (East Timor) € 309,622
Central America € 81,372
Mediterranean € 70,000
Other € 98,000

ARD landscape

Responsibility for ARD activities is shared by several ministries, institutions and foundations. The largest by budget share is IPAD under the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Other major contributions come from the Department of European, Bilateral and Multilateral Relations (DREBM), part of the FCT, which disburses funds to the Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research (CGIAR). The Ministry for Environment and Spatial Planning also touches on ARD where it intersects with environmental and resource issues.

Though it funds interdisciplinary agricultural research in many countries, Portugal holds a special mandate to support the other members of the CPLP: Angola, Brazil, Cape Verde, East Timor, Guinea-Bissau, Mozambique and São Tomé e Príncipe. IICT is the only Portuguese institution with a specific mandate to promote science and technology in tropical countries, especially those in the CPLP. Thus IICT is Portugal's representative in international ARD consortia and networks such as EIARD, CGIAR and Agrinatura.

IICT, INRB and several Portuguese universities all contribute to ARD through bilateral and multilateral on-site projects with local institutions. Bilateral projects are mainly funded by IPAD, while involvement in CGIAR activities is supported by Portugal's contributions through DREBM/FCT.

Main ARD programmes

  1. Portugal has funded the multilateral Ibero-American Programme of Science and Technology for Development (CYTED) since 1984, when the programme was created by 19 Latin American Countries along with Portugal and Spain.
  2. As a donor to the CGIAR system, Portugal supports projects at chosen centres. These prominently include CIMMYT, ICARDA, IRRI, ILRI and Bioversity International.
  3. INRB, IICT and Portuguese universities all maintain bilateral ARD cooperation with multiple countries and institutions, first and foremost those within the CPLP.
  4. Portugal has been involved in several ERA-NET platforms, working towards a convergence of norms and building procedures to launch coherent transnational calls.
  5. IICT is one of the founding members of AGRINATURA-EEIG, the operational arm of Agrinatura, the European Alliance on Agricultural Knowledge for Development.

Perspective

Portugal will continue to uphold its guiding mandate for development cooperation within the CPLP, while the contributing ministries, institutes and foundations pursue a wider goal of supporting true international and interdisciplinary agricultural research through initiatives like Agrinatura and EIARD.

This country profile has been commissioned by EIARD (the permanent ARD coordination platform between the European Commission, Member States of the European Union, Norway and Switzerland) as part of a series providing an overview of policies and support for agricultural research for development by EIARD member countries. EIARD is not responsible for any omissions and inaccuracies contained within this document and the information is only correct up to the date of publishing (August 2011).