The state and exchange of agricultural scientific and technical information in armenia
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The state and exchange of agricultural scientific and technical information in armenia l.jpg
The state and exchange of agricultural scientific and technical information in Armenia

Tomaž BARTOL 1, Narine KHURSHUDYAN 21 University of Ljubljana, Biotechnical Faculty, Department of Agronomy, Slovenia, [email protected] . Library of ASAU, Armenian State Agrarian University, Yerevan, [email protected]

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1 Background technical information in Armenia

  • Scholarly activities very developed in the past (esp. up till 1991).

  • Integrated in a wider regional and also international environment (Soviet period)

  • Results published in many different publications

  • Lively exchange of library materials

  • Breakup of the SU: scientific system began to disintegrate into fragments

  • Transition to independence (conflicts)

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2 Methods of data collection technical information in Armenia

  • CAB Abstracts (CAB)

  • Web of Science (WoS) /only selected agricultural categories

  • Name form for Armenia and search syntax:

    armyan* OR armen* OR erevan* OR yerevan* OR ehchmiadzin*).in.

  • truncation: Armyanskij, Armyanskaya, Erevanskij

  • not Armentieres (france) not Armenia (Colombia).

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3 Results technical information in Armenia3.1 CAB Abstracts and Web of Science

  • 354 records in CAB

  • 187 records in WoS

  • year 1990 - 159,000 yearly records in CAB (all records, divided by 10,000)

  • year 2008 - 256,000 yearly records

  • year 1990 - 73 records by Armenian authors (CAB)

  • year 2008 - 9 records (!) (CAB)

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3. technical information in Armenia2 CAB Abstracts Journals

  • 1990-1992: 129 records

  • 2006-2008: 31 records (too few to evaluate)

  • 1990-1992

  • 123 articles and 6 proceedings papers

  • 107 articles in Russian and 22 in English language

  • 35 different journals

  • Biologicheskii Zhurnal Armenii (48 records), Chemistry of Natural Compounds (7 records) and Botanicheskii Zhurnal (6 records).

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4 Assessment of present state of agricultural information in Armenia4.1 Background

  • Soviet Union - centralized information exchange

  • “Bibliotechni Collector” or Bibcollector - a specialized book trading establishment

  • All libraries-related procedures

  • The Central Collector for Scientific Libraries in Moscow

  • Distribution to other subordinate scientific and special libraries

  • Exchange system for scientific information existed in over 300 cities

  • Breakdown of the Soviet Union: this system ceases to exist.

  • Painful structural redefinition

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4.2 Agricultural institutions Armenia

The Armenian State Agrarian University (aff:Ministry of Education and Science)

  • the only agricultural school of higher education

  • branches in the towns of Sisian, Vanadzor and Stepanakert (Artzakh/Kharabakh)

  • more than 4000 regular students (B.Sc. degree)

  • 240 in the two years of postgraduate studies (M.Sc. degree).

  • As many as 5000 additional students (correspondence- and distant-education)

  • A few foreign students

  • ASAU also includes one college (two-year program) with 190 students

    Agribusiness Teaching Centre (ATC)

    Other (aff: Ministry of Agriculture)

  • Nine agricultural state colleges (dispersed in provinces/marzes)

    two-year program

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4.3 Library of ASAU Armenia

  • the only agricultural library in Armenia

  • 7500 users

  • currently subscribes to only 37 Journals (27 of those from Russia)

  • international scientific serials are virtually nonexistent at the library

  • several reading halls with no access to computers

  • Internet is not accessible to the end-users in the library

  • substantial staff of more than 30 workers (limited expertise in new technologies

  • 2000 a program was initiated to establish an Armenian Automated Library Network

  • involves mostly cataloguing of monographs, quite old on average

  • a limited local area network but most computers are technically not suitable

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4.4 Other Agriculture Research Organizations Armenia

In total, these organizations involve 249 research workers including many PhD holders

  • Agriculture and Plant Protection Research Centre (66)

  • Vegetable and Technical Crop Research Centre (23)

  • Petrosyan Soil Science, Agricultural Chemistry and Land Improvement Research Centre (53)

  • Horticulture, Viticulture, and Winemaking Research Centre (41)

  • Livestock Management and Veterinary Research Centre (47)

  • Agri-BioTechnology Research Centre (10)

  • Technical Crop Experimental Centre (9)

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5 Electronic/digital resources and international information projects

AGORA, HINARI, OARE, CAB Abstracts (availability through Agora) accessibleonly through the computer of the FAO-depositary library at the ASAU

Agris in Armenia

  • No functional Armenian (agricultural) bibliography as yet

  • Soviet bibliographic system Referativnyi Zhurnal (by VINITI) no longer systematically indexes Armenian publications

  • Software disconnected from the library network

  • Tentative resumption in 2010


  • Agroweb Armenia introduced in 2003

  • Branch of the AW network as well as AW CAC (AW Caucasus and Central Asia) network

  • endorsed in 2004

  • Team of information professionals which constantly update the Website

  • FAO DL manager posts up-to-date information on events related to agricultural information.

    Agora In Armenia

  • ASAU registered in 2004

  • Throughout this period AGORA has been underutilized

  • In 2009 a new initiative to use Agora was launched

  • Information literacy presentations as well as classes were held in June, July and September within the frame of FAO TCP/ARM

  • Agora introduced to different groups of participants, especially researchers, teachers and selected groups of university students

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6 projects FAO TCP ARM Technical Cooperation Project

AGORA, HINARI, OARE, CAB Abstracts (availability through Agora) accessibleonly through the computer of the FAO-depositary library at the ASAU

Workshops held in Yerevan in June and July, 2009

  • FAO research officers and knowledge management specialists

  • Armenian national coordinators

  • International consultants

  • Agriculture-related research and extension institutions identified as pilot sites

  • Survey of information and communication needs

    Based on experiences

  • VERCON (Virtual Extension and Research Communication Network)

  • ESCORENA (European System of Cooperative Research Networks in Agriculture) and AgroWeb Network


  • Lessons Learned from the eFarmer EU Project

  • Access to the global agricultural knowledge

  • Communication for Development

    Subsequent activities in the period Sept-Dec 2009

  • Information literacy training for intermediaries, such as scientists and extension specialists

  • Training for utilization of web platforms for information sharing was also aimed at farmers.

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7 I projects dentification and characteristics of recent Armenian agriculture-relatedpublications - journals

Agricultural journals

There are only a couple of Agricultural journals in Armenia

  • News of ASAU (Scientific journal, monthly). 2003-present. (some full text 2006-2007)

  • Agroscience (Scientific journal, quarterly). 1958-present. (no full text online). Articles in Am and Ru, abstracts in Am, En and Ru.En abstracts are available online on current basis.

  • Agrolratu (Newspaper, every ten days). 1951-present. (in Am, no full text online). Short En annotation is available online for selected items.

  • Agriculturist/Hask (Newspaper, twice a month). 1958-present. (in Am, no web page)

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7 I projects dentification and characteristics of recent Armenian agriculture-relatedpublications- proceedings

Proceedings of Armenian agricultural scientific meetings

  • Materials of International Scientific Conference “Protection and Use of Water Resources in South-Caucasus Region” /2009/Am,Ru/Am,Ru,En/45/3/Ge

  • Materials of Scientific Conference Dedicated to 80th Anniversary of ASAU Veterinary Medicine Faculty /2008/Am,Ru/Am,Ru/40/12/Ru,Ua

  • Proceedings of “Armenian Apricot” International Conference”/2007/Am,Ru,En/Am,Ru,En/19/5/It,Ru,Se,Sk,Cz

  • Materials of International Scientific Conference “Agrarian Policy and Problems of Agricultural Community Development” /2007/Am,Ru/Am,Ru,En/29/1/Ge

  • Materials of International Conference dedicated to 75th anniversary of ASAU establishment /2006/Am,Ru/Ru,Am/59/4/Ru,Ge

  • Materials of International Scientific Conference “Nowadays Problems of Agri-Food Quality and Safety and the Tendency of Agrarian Scientific System Development”/2005/Am,Ru/Am,Ru,En/21/-/-

  • Materials of Student Scientific Conference dedicated to 10th anniversary of students’ governing body /2004/Am/Ru,En/41/2/Ge

  • Materials of International Scientific Conference “Problems of Agrarian Education, Science, Extension and Production Quality and Efficacy” /2004/Am,Ru/Am,Ru,En/17/-/-

  • Materials of Scientific Conference dedicated to 100th anniversary of H. G. Stephanyan/2003/Am/En/39/-/-

  • Problems of the Stable Development of the Agro-Industrial System in the South Caucasus Region. In 3 Parts /2002/Am,Ru,En/Am,Ru,En/106+100+46/17/Ge,Az,Us

  • Agricultural and Environmental Problems in Transcaucasus” In 2 parts /2001/Am,Ru,En/Am,Ru,En/100+37/20/Ge,Az,Us

  • Materials of Student Scientific Conference dedicated to 1700th anniversary of Christianity

Proceedings were identified and analysed manualy (no computer catalogue as yet):

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8 projects Conclusions

  • Years ago Armenia already possessed efficient system of research and information; activities were internationally recognized

  • Publishing patterns exhibit two decades of decline and stagnation

  • It is difficult to consistently assess Armenian output after independence

  • Agricultural library remains focused on cataloguing printed materials

  • E-catalogue is only in the making (based mostly on monographs)

  • Open-access-based e-information is underutilised (lack of infrastructure)

  • Many cooperation initiatives, such as those by the FAO

  • Some projects could also serve as a venue for international dissemination of domestic agricultural information

  • Information-literacy competencies and international language skills must be boosted on all levels

  • University should play a more vigorous role

  • Needs for stronger inclusion and empowerment of the local scientific community

  • Efforts must produce better agricultural productivity indicators

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Thank you projects