Any innovation in technical and economic fields should not be developed without considering its impact on climate and soil. This statement is especially true for agriculture in the semi-arid and hot- arid areas of the Mediterranean. Here there are still many problems related to the biological and environmental uncertainties that dominate productivity phenomena, and where the limiting factors are certainly not only those of a macroscopic order. Agriculture in these Mediterranean areas can be reinvigorated, but it must first be revived by a new kind of technical progress.
This technical progress must arise from the interweaving of strong links between pure and applied scientific research: one part from formal genetics, the other from agronomy and vegetable cultivation. It has been proposed that the school should make a positive contribution to such a vast problem; and that from time to time the school should conduct discussions and in-depth studies of great interest to the progress of agriculture, organizing courses to which eminent Italian and foreign professors will be invited.
Among the topics of greatest interest are: the possibilities and limits of biological transformation and applied genetics; plant ecology of the Mediterranean area; the microbiological basis of soil depletion and the prospects of monoculture; the development and growth laws of biotypes as a function of climatic factors and vegetable cultivation; agrotourism and ecology; prospects for scientific research in agriculture and agronomic techniques up to the year 2000; problems of soil fertility conservation in the Mediterranean regions; grape growing in the Mediterranean area; intensive fruit growing, endemism and floriculture in the same area; group research and agronomic progress in the Mediterranean basin.