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The revision of some parts of the text by Dr Kaye E. Basford (University of Queensland), Dr Hugh G. Gauch (Cornell University) and Dr Mike Talbot (Biomathematics & Statistics Scotland), and the suggestions made by Dr Manjit S. Kang (Louisiana State University) and Dr Bruce Walsh (University of Arizona) on specific aspects of the work, are appreciated.

Dr Kamel Feliachi (Institut Technique des Grandes Cultures, Alger) and Dr Alice Perlini (Istituto Agronomico per l’Oltremare, Florence) are thanked for permitting the use of data from the Algerian-Italian cooperation project “Amélioration et renforcement du système nationale d’adaptation variétale du blé dur en Algérie” in the case study.

The International Rice Research Institute (IRRI) is thanked for permitting the use of the software IRRISTAT and its tutorial material and for allowing its distribution in the CD attached to this publication. Dr C. Graham McLaren and Ms Violeta Bartolome (IRRI) provided information related to the software.

The excellent work of Ms Ruth Duffy in the editing and formatting of the text is greatly appreciated.

Dr Helena Gómez Macpherson (Cereals Officer, Crop and Grassland Service, FAO) made possible the preparation and release of this publication.

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