Postgraduates discussing and preparing the CA runoff demonstration with Professors Li Lingling and Zhang at Dingxi Research Station in preparation for the workshop. Photos: Jack McHugh/CIMMYT
An international conservation agriculture (CA) workshop to be held during China Science Week (30 June–4 July 2015) will bring CIMMYT CA researchers, colleagues and national researchers together with the objective of building agro-ecological capacity among researchers in western China. At the workshop, hosted by CIMMYT-China, participants will discuss subjects such as CA successes and the science and practical agronomy underpinning CA, and will view field displays of CA benefits.
The workshop will advance international exchange and future collaboration through CIMMYT-China’s Global Conservation Agriculture Program (GCAP). China, a vital component of GCAP, plays an ever-increasing role in agricultural development across Asia and Africa. For example, GCAP-China collaborator Zhang Anping from the Nanjing Research Institute of Agricultural Mechanization recently returned from a 12-month machinery development program in Zimbabwe sponsored by the Chinese Government. Zhang will be hosting CIMMYT-GCAP on an agricultural machinery tour in Shandong Province following China Science Week.
Internationally renowned experts will be joined by CIMMYT’s GCAP team who will provide training and present CA research, development and extension practices, and share their expertise on CA issues that arise across Africa, Latin America and South Asia. Danny Decombel, Crop Nutritionist who has lived and worked in China for 27 years, will provide insights on nutrient and plant management and monitoring systems. Carl Timler of Wageningen University will provide hands-on training on the use of Farm DESIGN computer models and other farming system analytical tools. Farm DESIGN is a product of Wageningen University’s Farming Systems Ecology group.
National scientists will discuss new technologies, scientific advances and scholarly publications in China. Representatives from Gansu Agricultural University, The Grassland Institute of Lanzhou University, Gansu Academy of Agricultural Sciences and local agronomy consultants, in partnership with GCAP-China, will also be organizing the event.
Common farming practices on the Loess Plateau near Dingxi to be visited during the workshop.
In addition to the workshop, a participatory learning field day will be held at Dingxi Research Station in Gansu Province. During the field day, participants will learn about challenges to CA adoption, and will view demonstrations of conventional vs. CA treatment of water-holding capacity, infiltration, runoff, soil strength, plant nutrition levels and crop water use.
CIMMYT representatives attending will include Bruno Gerard, GCAP Director; M.L. Jat, Senior Cropping System Agronomist; Frederic Baudron, Farm Mechanization and Conservation Agriculture for Sustainable Intensification (FACASI) Project Leader; Santiago Lopez Ridaura, GCAP Systems Agronomist; and Tim Krupnik, Systems Agronomist.
Also in attendance will be professors John Bennett (University of Southern Queensland Australia), Enamel Haque (Murdoch University Perth Australia) and Jeremy Whish (CSIRO Australia). National representatives include Yang Changrong, expert in agro-ecology; Lan Yubin, leading expert in precision agriculture at South China Agricultural University; Pan Genxing, expert in soil biology and amendments at Nanjing Agricultural University; and Wang Yingkuan, Editor-in-Chief of the International Journal of Agricultural & Biological Engineering and Vice Secretary General of Chinese Society of Agricultural Engineering.