International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture

Global Information System

Global Information System on PGRFA

Article 17 of the International Treaty states that

"Contracting Parties shall cooperate to develop and strengthen a global information system to facilitate the exchange of information, based on existing information systems , on scientific, technical and environmental matters related to plant genetic resources for food and agriculture."

At its Sixth Session in 2015 the Governing Body adopted the Vision and the first Programme of Work on the Global Information System (GLIS) as contained in Resolution 3/2015. The Vision states that GLIS “integrates and augments existing systems to create the global entry point to information and knowledge for strengthening the capacity for PGRFA conservation, management and utilization". The Governing Body also translated the Vision into seven objectives and a programme of work with concrete activities for the period 2016-2022.

The Governing Body established a Scientific Advisory Committee on Article 17 to advise the Secretary on general recommendations on the development of the System and its components, the discovery of new areas of work with potential impact on the system, and the selection of pilot activities for the System and, upon request of the Secretary, other initiatives and actions to sustain the operations of the System and the further update of the programme of work. The first meeting of the Scientific Advisory Committee  took place in Rome in November 2016, the second meeting in June 2017 and the third meeting in June 2018. The Governing Body welcomed the Digital Object Identifiers for PGRFA in 2017. 

In November 2019, the Governing Body reconvened the Committee and requested it to continue considering scientific and technical issues of relevance to digital sequence information/genetic sequence data, and considering national legislation, as appropriate.

Partnerships and collaborations

Since 2017, the Global Information System has developed partnerships and connections with the World Information and Early Warning System (WIEWS), Genesys, GRIN-Global, and the European Search Catalogue for Plant Genetic Resources (EURISCO). In the 2020-21 biennium, the Secretariat is working on the strengthening of linkages with the SPGRC Documentation and Information System (Web-SDIS), as well as the Convention on Biological Diversity’s Clearing House Mechanism. The Governing Body has also requested the Secretary to continue enhancing cooperation with the DivSeek International Network, the Global Open Data for Agriculture and Nutrition (GODAN), the CGIAR Platform, and the Global Biodiversity Information Facility (GBIF).

The Governing Body further requested the Secretary to continue promoting initiatives to support national and regional programmes in the development and transfer of information technologies for, and data analysis of, plant genetic resources for food and agriculture, such as the Capfitogen Programme and the Platform for the Co-development and Transfer of Technologies

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