EUROPEAN-SEED.COM I EUROPEAN SEED I 7 bution. Within UPOV, we created a specific working group of UPOV and WIPO experts to develop a functioning tool using an agile approach, where every step had to be tested and approved by users before moving to the next step. This is a key aspect to ensuring that the IT project would succeed and that a workable tool would be made available at the end of the journey, fulfilling deliverables and within the agreed timeframe. We were also lucky to have on board very competent, knowledgeable experts bringing their competencies and desire to deliver a usable tool quickly in a complex environment with a lot of technical aspects to be addressed with a very pragmatic approach. We had to analyze business requirements and meet tech- nical constraints, such a security, data confidentiality, data structure and transfer. Some of the key elements required were to have an easy way to transfer application data, in a secure way, using an online platform with multi-lingual features. This unique international and multi-stakeholder project team allowed, after three years of development and a series of testing campaigns in which breeders had the opportunity to pro- vide their inputs through the entire process, to release a func- tioning tool at beginning of 2017, starting with a limited number of crops and countries. The first year was important to validate all the technical and procedural aspects of a fully functioning system in order to be able to move to a larger scale deployment which would be particularly relevant for breeders to use. ES: WHY DO YOU THINK IS IT ADVANTAGEOUS FOR A BREEDING COMPANY TO USE UPOV PRISMA? BR: • Online application tool to submit application data to par- ticipating PVP Offices in required format • Application forms can be displayed in a range of languages • Easy access to PVP application forms UPOV PRISMA allows breeders to make applications through an online tool that has multiple functionalities, such as different languages in which is it possible to navigate and edit application forms within the tool For countries who had not yet developed an online appli- cation platform, it was particularly relevant, and this remains a very strong incentive for countries to join in the development of a tool providing an international platform and exposure, in line with users’ expectations. The tool is very efficient for breeders because they are able to access the latest application forms of participating UPOV members easily in UPOV PRISMA. They can access those forms from anywhere at any time, they simply need to select the crop and the country in which they want to make an application. The tool available today allows breeders to select from a list of 22 countries and one region1 (see list below with search feature available online: www.upov.int/upovprisma) from around the world for all genera and species (when accepted by the authority). For users of the European Union system at the CPVO, it is now possible to link the two systems, meaning that the information can be transferred directly from UPOV PRISMA to the CPVO online system and vice-versa. For the European Union, we initially started with five crops (rose, soybean, potato, lettuce and apple), but there is a clear com- mitment to move soon to more crops in the coming version to be released in summer 2018. The multilingual functionality is also a major breakthrough in terms of usability for breeders all over the world. The inter- face can be displayed in a choice of languages (French, English, Spanish, German, Chinese, Japanese). This would help, for instance, a French breeder to display the questions in French for an application for a rose variety in Colombia. The tool will then automatically translate much of the application (especially in the technical questionnaire where breeders need to complete all the information in relation to the variety itself and describe its main characteristics) into Spanish which is the language in which the application must be submitted to Colombia. Having access to drop down lists with pre-filled information extracted from the UPOV Technical Questionnaire (TQ) or National/ regional char- acteristics helps the breeder to select the relevant information and to have it translated into the language required by the coun- try selected which has provided national approved translations. For example most of the information in the TQ of any application in Turkey will be translated into Turkish. Breeders only need to provide the remaining free text translations; which could be a small part of the entire application form! • Much of the data can be re-used in subsequent applica- tions Breeders are able to duplicate a previous application for the same variety, or start a completely new application and submit their application online. The reusability of data is a key aspect and benefit for breed- ers, as it really saves time and effort. For example, if you have submitted an application in the Netherlands for lettuce in UPOV PRISMA you can copy all the information already provided and saved in the system into a subsequent application in New Zealand, for instance, or Chile. Much of the application form Map of participating countries in UPOV-Prisma. The amount is steadily growing.