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AFRI – FAS Sustainable Agroecosystems (A1451)
Program Area Priority: This program area priority calls for research projects that focus on improvement of ecosystem health and output of ecosystem services in managed production systems (croplands, forests, and rangelands) that are currently under stress or at risk from climate change, pests, pathogens, invasive plants, and increased environmental pressures. This priority area calls for applied research that will advance scientific understanding of health functions, processes and management of sustainable agroecosystems. Projects will assess responses of ecosystem health in managed systems and develop innovative management or conservation practices with a focus on ecosystem service impacts and systems resilience. Projects should have the potential for substantial improvements in ecosystem services in extensively managed agricultural systems by addressing the impacts of changes in management practices on croplands, forest, and rangelands at regional or national scales. Applicants may focus on the interactions among social, cultural, economic, technological, and environmental dimensions with environmental and economic dimensions. Applications using indigenous traditional ecological knowledge are welcome for this program area priority.
To enable development and evaluation of innovative management practices while enhancing ecosystem services, applications must address one of the following:
a. New approaches that significantly increase ecosystem health and resilience, particularly in response to climate change, along with the output or value of more than one ecosystem service, each compared with the current management system for the region.
b. Improving connection of ecosystem health to managed system productivity, functionality, socioeconomic viability, biodiversity, sustainability and/or resilience.