Assessing Crop Production, Nutrient Management, Climatic Risk and Environmental Sustainability with Simulation Models
Muscle Shoals, Alabama, USA
May 9-19, 2011
Today more than ever, increased crop production depends on judicious use of resources. In addition, issues such as climate change, climate variability, soil carbon sequestration, biofuels, long-term food security and environmental sustainability have become increasingly important. Computer simulation models of the soil/plant/atmosphere system can make a valuable contribution to both furthering our understanding of the processes that determine crop responses and predicting crop performance, resource use and environmental impacts for different environments and management scenarios. User-oriented simulation models greatly facilitate the task of optimizing crop growth and deriving recommendations concerning crop management. They can also be used to determine the potential impact of climate change on crop production and long-term soil carbon sequestration, or provide management scenarios for adapting to climate change and variability.
IFDC, in collaboration with the International Consortium for Agricultural Systems Applications (ICASA) and several other institutions, will host a training program on DSSAT Version 4.5 on May 9-19, 2011, in Muscle Shoals, Alabama, USA. The overall goal of this training program is to familiarize participants with the Decision Support System for Agrotechnology Transfer (DSSAT) and the Cropping System Model (CSM) for the simulation of crop growth and yield, soil and plant water, nutrient and carbon dynamics, and the application of models to real-world problems.
Training Program Objectives:
The overall goal of this training program is to familiarize participants with a comprehensive computer model for the simulation of crop growth and yield, soil and plant water, nutrient and carbon dynamics and their application to real-world problems.
Specifically the program will focus on:
Operation of the Windows-based DSSAT Version 4.5 software.
Description of the DSSAT- CSM and its modules, such as CROPGRO and CERES, and the science embedded in the models.
Minimum data requirements and experimental data collection for systems simulation.
Integration of crop simulation models with database management and Geographical Information Systems.
Application of the DSSAT-CSM model to improve management of cropping systems.
Who Should Attend:
This training program is designed for agronomists, soil scientists, meteorologists and economists from national and international agricultural research institutes and universities, as well as policy-makers in charge of agricultural productivity and planning.
Be university graduates currently engaged in crop production or agro-ecosystems-related research, teaching, extension, outreach or planning.
Have some understanding of crop and soil science and be relatively familiar with the terminology used in these fields. An in-depth level of knowledge, however, is not a prerequisite.
Be familiar with personal computers and the Windows operating environment.
Training Program Features:
The training program will:
Describe a practical approach for simulating effects of soil, weather, management and pest factors on crop production.
Demonstrate how processes of crop growth and development, water use, uptake of water and nutrients and carbon dynamics can be simulated.
Make extensive use of “hands-on” sessions that apply the DSSAT-CSM model to cropping systems in various regions of the world.
Describe procedures for collecting and managing crop, weather and soil data for model evaluation.
Give participants the opportunity to work with their own data and determine the accuracy of the models for application to specific problems.
Analyze management alternatives for single seasons or over long-term crop rotations.
Concentrate on specific applications that include irrigation, fertilizer and nutrient management, climate change, soil carbon sequestration, climate variability and precision management.
Assess economic risks and environmental impacts associated with agricultural production.
The following faculty will lecture in this training program:
Dr. G. Hoogenboom, Washington State University
Dr. K.J. Boote, University of Florida
Dr. L.A. Hunt, University of Guelph, Canada
Dr. J.W. Jones, University of Florida
Dr. J. Lisazo, Universidad Politecnica de Madrid, Spain
Dr. U. Singh, IFDC
Dr. J. W. White, USDA-ARS-ALARC
Dr. P.W. Wilkens, IFDC
...and other experts from the International Consortium
for Agricultural Systems Applications (ICASA)
Visa and Medical Insurance:
APPLICATIONS FOR VISAS SHOULD BE MADE AS EARLY AS POSSIBLE. A visa is required for entry into the United States. Each participant must obtain a visa from the Embassy or Consulate of the United States in his/her country of residence. Participants should fulfill all required immunizations and health formalities before departing their county of residence. Medical insurance should be obtained by participants. The program fee does not cover any medical insurance or expenses.
Cost and Enrollment:
The program fee for this training course is US $1,500 per participant. This fee is due with enrollment but no later than April 9, 2011. A non-refundable deposit of US $200 is required with each registration. The deposit will be credited toward the program fee, which is due four weeks before the program is scheduled. Thereafter, a Late Fee in the amount of US $200 will apply. The program fee, less the deposit, will be refunded for cancellations made two weeks before the commencement of the program; thereafter, 90 percent of the paid fee will be returned and 10 percent, in addition to the deposit, will be charged to cover administrative costs.
Registration will be on a first-come, first-served basis. Paid participants will receive priority. Registration and program fee payments should reach IFDC by April 10, 2011. Those received thereafter will be accepted at IFDC’s discretion and incur an additional US $200 late fee. An organization wishing to enroll more than one participant should supply information for each participant.
Payment of the program fee can be made by (1) check or draft payable to IFDC; (2) wire transfer to the IFDC account in the U.S.A. through First Metro Bank, 406 West Avalon Avenue, Muscle Shoals, Alabama, U.S.A., ABA number 062203955 for credit to IFDC Account number 55281; or (3) major credit card – MasterCard, Visa or American Express.
The program fee covers registration, training and reference material (the DSSAT v4.5 software and the book Understanding Options for Agricultural Production), coffee/tea breaks, all lunches and surface transportation related to field trips. The fee does not include costs of participants' air travel expenses from their home country to the United States and return or any air travel within the United States, lodging and meal expenses (beyond lunches as stated above), medical and/or communications expenses. Participants are responsible for these costs. Participants should plan to arrive in Muscle Shoals, Alabama, U.S.A., on Sunday, May 8, 2011.
The brand new Residence Inn by Marriott in Florence, Alabama, offers spacious suites with separate areas for sleeping, working, eating and relaxing. Each room comes equipped with a full kitchen, including a full size refrigerator, stove, microwave and dishwasher, iron and ironing board, coffee maker and LCD television. Their warm, inviting staff is available 24/7 and will make you feel right at home during your 2-week stay. The hotel is conveniently located within walking distance to restaurants, shopping and places of entertainment. The hotel’s wired fiber optic internet is among the fastest in the state of Alabama and is complimentary to all guests. Guests can relax by the pool or hot tub or utilize the grill and fire pit. For the sports fanatic, the hotel also features a state of the art fitness facility, as well as an outdoor sports court.
Participants will be extended IFDC’s negotiated special all inclusive King Studio Suite rate of $69.00 per night. This rate includes a full complimentary hot breakfast that is offered daily. The hotel's management staff also hosts a complimentary reception at least two nights a week that includes a grill out and a wine and cheese evening. The hotel coordinates are:
Residence Inn Florence
1000 Sweetwater AvenueFlorence, Alabama 35630, U.S.A.
Phone: +1 (256) 764-9966 Fax: 1-256-764-9988
IFDC is a nonprofit, public international organization (PIO) dedicated to increasing agricultural productivity and food production through the development and use of plant nutrients in sustainable crop production systems. Headquartered in Muscle Shoals, Alabama, U.S.A., IFDC is involved in human resource development, research and technical assistance in collaboration with public, private, national and international organizations throughout the world. IFDC has conducted more than 700 formal workshops, study tours and training programs for about 10,000 participants from 150 countries since 1974. The programs have covered a wide range of subjects including integrated soil fertility management and fertilizer use efficiency, fertilizer production technology, agri-input dealership, competitive marketing, supply chain management, investment analysis, policy reforms and numerous specialized topics.
For more information:
Training and Workshop Coordination Unit
P.O. Box 2040
Muscle Shoals, Alabama 35662, U.S.A.
Telephone: +1 (256) 381-6600
Telefax: +1 (256) 381-7408
As a nonprofit organization, IFDC does not finance or sponsor any participant.