It is notoriously difficult to assess the economic value of research aimed at improving research capacity, particularly for the human capital component of research capacity. In this paper, a framework is developed and an analysis is undertaken of the value of training for scientists in wheat rust resistance. The value of improving human capital is assessed through a framework based on marginal analysis of the improvement in productivity outcomes flowing from the increased capacity. On that basis, the value of programs to build human capacity through training or further education can be estimated. Although such estimates are necessarily qualified, they provide a basis for quantifying the value of building research and development capacity.