Agriculturae Conspectus Scientificus, Vol 67, No 2 (2002)

Priority Setting in Agricultural Research in Croatia


Pages: 57-68


In this paper, the main objective, a set of sub-objectives of national agricultural research system (NARS) and criteria for setting research priorities have been analysed and established. The Analytical Hierarchy Process (AHP) is applied and a hierarchical model developed containing three levels of criteria. On the basis of “pairwise comparison,” weights are ascribed to criteria and sub- criteria as well as intensities of bottom level criteria values. Within this model, a decision support system (DSS) – Expert Choice - is used to develop a spreadsheet model for establishing rating of research projects. For each objective a list of economic, social and ecological criteria was developed in order to measure the contribution of each alternative (research theme) to the achievement of the respected objective. The alternatives in this model are seventeen different agricultural commodities. Results show that the sub-objective “economic efficiency” achieved the highest value and thus greatly influenced on the final rank of alternatives. The next criterion according to its relative importance is “sustainability of natural resources” and the last one is “social equity”. The “production value” criterion, which measures the research contribution to economic efficiency, achieved the greatest importance among economic criteria. In the social criteria group, the “cash flow” criterion achieved the highest importance, and among ecological criteria the most important was “natural environment”. Finally, the six best-ranked priority research themes were extrapolated from the model and could be considered as priority products for implementing research.


agricultural scientific research; priority setting; resource allocation

Full Text: PDF