By Mattias Boman
Unasylva. Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, Rome, Italy. ISBN 92-5-004529-8. http://www.fao.org/forestry/FODA/UNASYLVA/unasyl-e.stm
Since 1947, the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) has produced Unasylva, an international quarterly journal of forestry and forest industries. Unasylva is produced in separate English, French and Spanish editions. All 203 issues (51 volumes) of this journal during 1947-2000 are now available in the convenient form of a compact disc (CD).
A basic requirement to access the contents of the CD is to have a Web browser (Netscape, Internet Explorer, etc.) installed on the computer. I have tried the CD with Netscape as well as Internet Explorer, and it works well in both cases. The starting page is very lucid, containing five basic links:
Catalogue: The complete list of all issues of Unasylva 1947-2000.
Search: By title/author/volume or issue number/publication year etc.
Guidelines for authors.
A drawback of the search function on the CD is that it is not possible to search on subject matter. As the number of articles is very large, it is hard to get an overview of interesting material when the search function is limited to title, author, volume or year.
The CD gives a broad coverage of subjects that have been at the focus of forest research over the past decades. As I am an environmental and resource economist, it was natural for me to search for titles within this field. As an example, I came across one very early and insightful article by B. Frank on “Valuation forest lands from the public viewpoint” (Unasylva Vol. 2, No. 2, 1948). This author is indeed early in his recognition of the public good aspects of forest land, as he examines the role of e. g. soil protection, recreational and wildlife values in forest policy making. Readers in many other fields, such as silviculture, planning and management will also find relevant material on the CD.
Unasylva is directed towards a wider audience, and the articles are therefore generally written in a style that is accessible and non-technical. Thus, it is useful for a non-specialist reader who is interested in the evolution of international forestry issues.
Southern Swedish Forest Research Centre
SE-230 53 Alnarp