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Home>Major Activities>Seminars and Workshops in 2008>A New Approach to Soil Information Systems for Natural Resources Management in Asian Countries

October 13-17, 2008
National Institute for Agro-Environmental Sciences (NIAES), Japan
Background / Highlights of Activity

Soil Information System (SIS) provides not only relevant soil information related to crop productivity, but also wide-ranging useful data such as, assessment and conservation of environmental quality, wildlife habitats, and global warming and energy concerns. USA and Europe have, in particular, strengthened the latter aspects in their SIS. The USDA-NRCS, for instance, provides not only fundamental soil data, but also energy- and money-saving strategies for relevant cultural practices for web-users. The EU has followed suit, launching the European Soil Portal in 2004, and has started providing a variety of natural resources information for the region.

In Asia, on the other hand, only a few countries have established their own SIS, chiefly consisting of computer-based soil map associated with detailed analytical soil data. However, they make public, at most, only a few relevant data on their website.

SIS is undoubtedly a very useful tool not only for policy makers and scientists, but also for extension specialists, farmers, and even consumers. Therefore, it is a matter of urgency to understand the current status of SIS in individual countries in the region, and to formulate an appropriate regional SIS scheme for the entire would-be users in the ASPAC.


  1. To review the current status of SIS (or available soil data such as soil map) in participating Asian countries;
  2. To exchange relevant information on appropriate SIS among the participating countries;
  3. To share technological know-how relevant in establishing a SIS for sustainable crop production among the participant countries; and
  4. To discuss the possibility of establishing of an appropriate regional SIS for sustainable crop production in the ASPAC.

Expected output(s)

  1. Technology and information on the SIS developed in the participating countries will be shared among the participants, and a common and relevant methodology and information will be summarized into a technical bulletin.
  2. An appropriate regional SIS will be proposed for sustainable crop production in the ASPAC.