Introduction: John Fereira


My name is John Fereira. I am a programmer analyst/technology strategist at Albert R. Mann Library, Cornell University. Mann Library is the Cornell Agricultural library. A couple of weeks ago an invitation was sent to us by Johannes Keizer and after a couple of quick meetings it was decided that I would be the best candidate from our department to attend the Face-2-Face meeting in Wageningen.

This is not the first time that we have collaborated with FAO. Several years ago I had the pleasure of attending meetings in Rome to help kick off the Agora ( I was involved in several of the initial design decisions but became involved in another large project in collaboration with the USDA ( and one of my collegues took over the development of the Agora system.

One of the areas in which I hope to bring my recent experience in to the table is the area of project collaboration. I am currently collaborating on a project as a developer that includes several people from the central IT (CIT) department at Cornell (this is the first time there has been any significant collaboration between the library and CIT) along with developers from three other educational institutions. I have also been involved with several community open source projects, primarily JA-SIG:, where I am the acting webmaster for the organization, documentation coordinator for one of the sub-projects, and have served on the planning committe for the last three semi-annual conferences.

I have also worked with the international agriculture community somewhat recently when I did a scoping study paper for a Cereal Systems Knowledge Portal for CIMMYT and IRRI.

I’ll cut this short for know and save the rest of my introduction for our meeting.


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