The book reflects the work in progress regarding the analysis of the costs of crop genetic resources conservation that has been conducted at various research insti tutes over the last couple of years, including research conducted at ZEF and asso ciated institutes. In addition, contributions in this publication were presented at a special session during the "Global Dialogue: The Role of the Village in the 2]'1 Century: Crops, Jobs and Livelihood" in Hannover, Germany, at the World Exposition in Au gust 2000. The purpose of the publication is to make a general contribution to the ongoing discussion about the conservation of crop genetic resources as part of the global strategy to secure increasing food production in a sustainable way. Specifically, it discusses the costs of the worldwide efforts to conserve crop genetic resources on the basis of theoretical and applied studies. It aims to serve decision-makers at dif ferent levels with information on the costs involved in the conservation of genetic resources and hence to increase the awareness of the importance of improving the cost effectiveness of different conservation methods in order to optimize the sus tainability of conservation. The quoted Leipzig Declaration, which was adopted at the Fourth International Technical Conference on Plant Genetic Resources in Leipzig in June 1996, dem onstrates the close linkage of the contributions to the ongoing discussion about the implementation of the Global Plan of Actionfor the Conservation and Sustainable Utili zation of Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture.