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This article in JEQ

  1. Vol. 5 No. 3, p. 221-227
    Received: Sept 16, 1975

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The Role of Systems Analysis in the Use of Agricultural Wastes1

  1. D. D. Schulte and
  2. E. J. Kroeker2



Agricultural waste management is a multidisciplinary field which has grown in an attempt to solve problems of agricultural byproduct utilization and disposal. Development of meaningful solutions to agricultural waste management problems will be much simpler if practitioners and researchers educate one another and together work to solve the different problems of the producer. Many disciplines have already become involved in the problem-solving process; yet, there is a need for a generalist in agricultural waste management who can bridge disciplinary gaps and promote effective cooperation between specialists in various fields of study. Systems analysis can serve a useful purpose in agricultural waste management by providing a focal point for cooperation between disciplines working on various aspects of the problem. Systems analysis has been used to: (i) provide a common structure for comparison of agricultural waste management strategies; (ii) identify processes or links within waste-utilization systems which are costly or sensitive to operating conditions; (iii) predict effects of external constraints such as government policy, fertilizer taxes, and prices on the effectiveness of waste utilization strategies; (iv) yield information to predict where research funds would be spent most effectively; and (v) assist in technology transfer from researchers to practitioners through the aid of computer-based educational models.

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