Tackling increasing drought with conservation agriculture

Dr. Katrin Prager advises on social science research into farmer decision-making in Tunisia

Dr. Katrin Prager (Reader in Geography and Environment and Programme Director for Master of Land Economy) participated in the final project meeting of ConServeTerra, followed by the 1st Mediterranean Conference on Conservation Agriculture in Tunis, Tunisia 22-24 November 2023. Dr. Prager serves on the Scientific Advisory Board of ConServeTerra, advising on the social science research into farmer decision making around conservation agriculture. Conservation agriculture encompasses a number of principles, including no or minimum tillage of the soil, maintaining soil cover all year round rather than leaving the soil exposed after harvesting the crops, and a crop rotation that is beneficial for soil health.

The conference on the second day brought together three EU PRIMA funded projects ConServeTerra, CAMA and 4CE-MED. Across the three projects, recommendations for scientists, farmers and policy makers were developed. Katrin Prager compiled the insights for how to influence policy and specific recommendations for policy makers in the Mediterranean countries to encourage uptake of conservation agriculture practices and sustainable farming.

The third day allowed for a visit to the 300 ha family farm near Menzel Bourguiba where conservation agriculture has been applied for over 15 years and the father-and-sons team are continuously trialling new crop combinations and weed management practices to cope with the extreme drought brought about by climate change, erosion-prone soil and poor market demand for sustainably grown crops.

Notes for Editors

Notes for Editors

Taken from the University of Aberdeen, School of Geosciences website. The University of Aberdeen published this article here on 29 November 2023.

Image: Katrin Prager and ConServeTerra project coordinator Harun Cicek

PublishedWednesday November 29th, 2023