Demonstrates the intimate relationship between biological diversity and cultural diversity. The 15 contributors look at experimentation using crops such as rice, maize, beans and root crops, illustrated by case studies from India, Nepal and Nigeria among others. There are also studies of water harvesting in the Sudan and of the home gardens in South India. The findings of this study show: farmers do experiment; farmers know their local environments intimately, and their experiments are usually site-specific; farmers have a close and detailed knowledge of local cultivators, and are well aware of the need to promote biological diversity; the experiments underlie the imporatnce of "in situ" conservation, including the protection of wild plants; and any attempts of local conservation of natural resources should involve the local inhabitants. This collection emphasizes the importance of cultural factors and will contribute to the debate about biological diversity.
Gordon Prain, Regional Director, International Potato Centre, East, Southeast Asia and the Pacific Division, Jakarta, Indonesia. Sam Fujisaka, Agricultural Anthropologist, CIAT, Colombia. Professor Dennis Michael Warren was an anthropologist and leading Africanist scholar who taught at Iowa State University from 1972 to1997. Professor Warren was especially interested in indigenous knowledge and rural development in Africa. His interest in indigenous knowledge led him to the study of art, culture, the rural economy and traditional healing in Ghana and Nigeria and to comparative studies of other societies.