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AFRI – FAS Foundational Knowledge of Agricultural Production Systems (A1102)

September 14, 2023

Program Area Priority: The Foundational Knowledge of Agricultural Production Systems program supports plant research to advance our knowledge for the wide range of agricultural production systems found across the rural-urban continuum, from conventional or organic open-fields to protected built environments. Research will address critical or process-limiting dynamics that occur among and within the various management components of a production system using experimental manipulations of system components, technological interventions, system analyses, modeling, or 16 agroecological approaches. Results are expected to lead to the development of innovative sustainable solutions to challenges limiting or threatening the productivity, profitability, and good stewardship of natural resources, environment, and human capital. Projects involving the use of indigenous traditional ecological knowledge in designing agricultural systems will be appropriate for this program area priority. Also welcome are applications that incorporate virtual learning options, where appropriate and practical for integrated programs.

Applications must address one or more of the following (order does not indicate importance):

  1. Investigate how multiple management components of agricultural production systems can be integrated to enhance soil-crop-atmospheric processes or resilience to various biotic and abiotic stressors including those exacerbated by climate change, and improve product quality and/or productivity;
  2. Determine how production systems, including regenerative systems, can alter the structure of microbial communities associated with plants, soils, or other growing media; the ways alterations affect functions such as plant nutrient uptake/utilization efficiency; and resilience to weeds, insects, diseases, weather extremes associated with climate change, and other stressors that influence productivity and/or product quality (including nutritional quality);
  3. Investigate how changes to cropping systems, including diversification or intensification, affect crop performance, soil health, and other outcomes beneficial to system resilience; or
  4. Conduct syntheses and meta-analyses of existing data or develop new or extend existing models to derive general principles about the function, properties, and performance of agricultural production systems.


September 14, 2023
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