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Getting help from FAO

Technical assistance

Technical assistance

Whereas FAO can at times advise individuals on an ad-hoc basis, it is not equipped to do this on a large scale. Most technical assistance is provided through projects, following an official request for assistance from a government. The objectives of a project are set out in a project document which forms the basis of an agreement between FAO, the country concerned, and the funding agency.

Though FAO projects are normally established to solve technical problems or carry out technical programmes, all projects have the equally important objective of building or strengthening local institutions so they can tackle these problems for themselves.

Governments that wish to obtain any form of technical assistance from FAO should contact the FAO representative in their country or region, who can assist in the formulation of a programme and advise on funding.

Further information is available directly from: FAO, Via delle Terme di Caracalla, 00100 Rome, Italy.


FAO produces a range of technical literature in several languages covering soil and water management under the following headings:

• Soil Bulletins, a list of which appear on the right, and several of which, printed in bold, deal with aspects of land evaluation;

• Irrigation and Drainage Papers; and

• Conservation Guides.

In addition, FAO has produced, together with leading soil scientists throughout the world, the World Soil Map and its legend, and important project reports such as the series covering the original world-wide Agro-Ecological Zones Project, and the follow-up project on potential population-supporting capacities of lands in the developing world.

Over the years, FAO has carried out numerous land evaluation and land-use planning projects, for which technical reports are available.

FAO Soil Bulletins can be purchased locally through FAO sales agents or directly from: Distribution and Sales Section, FAO, Via delle Terme di Caracalla, 00100 Rome, Italy.

FAO Soil Bulletins

1. Soils of the arid zones of Chile
2. Survey of soil laboratories in 64 FAO member countries
3. Guide on general specialized equipment for soil laboratories
4. Guide to 60 soil water conservation practices
5. Selection of soil for cocoa
6. Aerial photo interpretation in soil survey
7. A practical manual of soil microbiology laboratory methods
8. Soil survey interpretation and its use
9. The preparation of soil survey reports
10. Physical and chemical methods of soil and water analysis
11. Soil fertility investigations on farmers' gelds
12. A study on the response of wheat to fertilizers
13. Land degradation
14. Improving soil fertility in Africa
15. Legislative principles of soil conservation
16. Effects of intensive fertilizer use on the human environment
17. Trace elements in soils and agriculture
18. Guide to the calibration of soil tests for fertilizer recommendations
19. Soil survey interpretation for engineering purposes
20. Fertilizer legislation
21. Calcareous soils
22. Approaches to land evaluation
23. Management properties of ferralsols
24. Shifting cultivation and soils conservation in Africa
25. Sandy soils
26. Planning and organization of fertilizer development in Africa
27. Organic materials as fertilizers
28. S.I. units and nomenclature in soil science
29. Land evaluation in Europe
30. Soil conservation in developing countries
31. Prognosis of salinity and alkalinity
32. A framework for land evaluation
33. Soil conservation and management in developing countries
34. Assessing soil degradation
35. Organic materials and soil productivity
36. Organic recycling in Asia
37. Improved use of plant nutrients
38/1. Soil and plant testing and analysis
38/2. Soil and plant testing as a basis of fertilizer recommendations
39. Guidelines for prognosis and monitoring of salinity and sodicity
40. China: recycling of organic wastes in agriculture
41. China: azolla propagation and small-scale biogas technology
42. Soil survey investigations for irrigation
43. Organic recycling in Africa
44. Watershed development with special reference to soil and water conservation
45. Organic material and soil productivity in the Near East
46. Blue-green algae for rice production - a manual for its promotion
47. Le recyclage des résidus agricoles organiques en Afrique
48. Micronutrients and the nutrient status of soils: a global study
49. Application of nitrogen-fixing systems in soil management
50. Keeping the land alive: soil erosion - its causes and cures
51. El reciclaje de material orgánicas en la agriculture de America Latina
52. Guidelines: land evaluation for rainfed agriculture
53. Improved production systems as an alternative to shifting cultivation
54. Tillage systems for soil and water conservation
55. Guidelines: land evaluation for irrigated agriculture
56. Soil management: compost production in tropical and subtropical environments
57. Soil and water conservation in semi-arid areas
58. Guidelines: land evaluation for extensive grazing
59. Nature and management of tropical peat soils
60. Soil conservation for small farmers in the humid tropics
61. Radioactive fallout in soils, crops and food
62. Management of gypsiferous soils
63. Micronutrient assessment at the country level: an international study

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