Pillar 5: Harmonization of methods, measurements and indicator for the sustainable management and protection of soil resources
While the availability of soil data and information is dealt with in Pillar 4, it needs to be emphasized that information about soils must first be gathered in a harmonized way; otherwise, experiences cannot be shared and combined.
This is of utmost importance, for example, to utilize soil information for policy development and the building of observation systems. Harmonization and establishing guidelines and standards should not be a goal per se of the GSP. Standardization always implies a cost for the various stakeholders and therefore a clear cost/benefit analysis needs to be provided to justify any standardization activity.
Pillar 5 provides the mechanisms for developing and exchanging globally consistent and comparable harmonized soil information. This refers to soil profile observation and description data, laboratory and field analytical data, and also derived products such as digital soil maps and soil property estimations, and interpreted information based on agreed and representative indicator sets. Thus, Pillar 5 is a basic foundation of Pillar 4, and an enabling mechanism for all GSP pillars providing and using global soil information.
Composition of the Pillar 5 Working Group
Chair: Rainer Baritz
Secretary: Ronald Vargas
Africa: Mr. Vinod B. Lalljee (Mauritius)
Asia: Mr. Audthasit Wongmaneeroj (Thailand)
Europe: Hakki E. Erdogan/ Eurasia: Hukmatullo Ahmadov
Central America, Caribbean and Mexico: Ms Floria Bertsch (Costa Rica)/ South America: Jefé Leáo Ribeiro (Brazil)
Near East and North Africa: Imad Ghanma
North America: Curtis Monger
South West Pacific: Alison Collins
ITPS Chair for Pillar 5: Vinod B. Lalljee (Mauritius)