International Poplar Commission
Poplars and Willows Book
Background information and history of the book
The IPC, through FAO, has been responsible for the production of 2 major books on poplars in 1958 and 1980. Both of those valuable and informative volumes were published by FAO but are now out of print. In the meantime, knowledge of the Salicaceae, their characteristics and cultivation, has increased dramatically, and their use for a variety of applications meeting the needs of society and the environment has expanded globally. In September 2002, the Executive Committee of the IPC, meeting in Rome, endorsed the production of a completely new edition of the poplar and willow publication. The objective is to produce a major update of the previous (1980) edition of the FAO publication on poplars and willows in an accessible format, providing a practical worldwide overview and guide to their basic characteristics, cultivation and use as well as issues, problems and trends relating to poplars and willows. The publication will synthesize the latest knowledge and technology in current research on poplars and willows, linking these to implementation achievements to meet the needs of sustainable livelihoods, land-use and development. It will provide a sourcebook of general information and a guide to further specialized and regional sources of scientific and technical information on cultivation of poplars and willows. The prospectus and author instructions detail further background to the publication.
Key features of the content and format include:
- Global coverage, including experience with poplars and willows in China, Russia, South America and countries with economies in transition.
- More emphasis to willows than in previous editions.
- Prominent coverage of the environmental benefits of poplar and willow culture.
- Emphasis on the importance of poplars and willows in meeting the needs of people, communities, their livelihoods and development.
- Sourcebook of general information and guide to further specialized and regional sources of scientific and technical information on cultivation of poplars and willows.
- Preparation of chapter content by international teams of authors with extensive knowledge and experience of the topics.
- Initial publication of individual chapters in electronic format as FAO Forestry Working Papers, making full use of the hyperlink capabilities of the electronic format.
Work on the publication began in mid-2004 and is expected to be completed in 2012, when it will be published in book form. The book will contain an extensive bibliography, lists of related sources of further information, a glossary and index. The editors have recruited a team of 11 lead authors of key chapters (representing 7 different countries) who are receiving input from a much more extensive, global array of contributing authors. All of the authors are contributing their time and effort voluntarily, recognizing the need for and potential value of the projected end-product. At this point in the preparation process, drafts have been received for each chapter.