IDEAS home Printed from
MyIDEAS: Log in (now much improved!) to save this paper

Optimal Search in Ex situ Collections of Wheat Genetic Resources

Listed author(s):
  • Gollin, Douglas
  • Smale, Melinda
  • Skovmand, Bent

This paper develops a theoretical model for analyzing gene bank management decisions regarding the search for traits of economic value in ex situ collections of wheat. The model is applied to data on the probability of finding useful sources of resistance to Russian wheat aphid (Diuraphis noxia) and septoria tritici leaf blotch, using Monte Carlo simulations for sampling distributions, simulations of varietal diffusion paths, and actual cost data from searches. Three specific questions are posed and answered: (1) what is the optimal size of search among genetic resources of a given type for a trait of economic value? (2) what is the value of specialized knowledge about which genetic resources are most likely to display resistance? and (3) how should search resources be allocated across types of genetic resources? Results demonstrate the sensitivity of the optimal size of search to the economic importance of the problem, the probability distributions of the trait in different types of genetic resources, and the costs and time lags associated with transferring the trait into usable breeding material. The costs and time lags involved with conventional pre-breeding techniques imply that in some searches, certain categories of genetic resources (such as landraces) will be systematically ignored. The fact that they may be rarely utilized does not imply that collections of landraces have no value, however, as shown in the case of Russian wheat aphid. Though applied here to data on insect and disease resistance, the model can be adapted to search decisions for other types of traits.

If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.

File URL:
Download Restriction: no

Paper provided by CIMMYT: International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center in its series Economics Working Papers with number 7695.

in new window

Date of creation: 1998
Handle: RePEc:ags:cimmew:7695
Contact details of provider: Postal:
Apdo. Postal 6-641, 06600 Mexico, D.F.

Phone: +52(55) 5804-2004
Fax: +52(55) 5804-7558
Web page:

More information through EDIRC

References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:

in new window

  1. Smale, Melinda, 1997. "The Green Revolution and wheat genetic diversity: Some unfounded assumptions," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 25(8), pages 1257-1269, August.
  2. P.M.S. Jones, 1994. "The Value of Diversity," Energy & Environment, , vol. 5(3), pages 215-225, September.
  3. Rausser, Gordon C. & Small, Arthur A., 1999. "Bioprospecting with prior ecological information," Department of Agricultural & Resource Economics, UC Berkeley, Working Paper Series qt6xf5z188, Department of Agricultural & Resource Economics, UC Berkeley.
  4. Simpson, R David & Sedjo, Roger A & Reid, John W, 1996. "Valuing Biodiversity for Use in Pharmaceutical Research," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 104(1), pages 163-185, February.
  5. repec:cdl:agrebk:1143229 is not listed on IDEAS
Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:ags:cimmew:7695. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (AgEcon Search)

If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.