Visit from the University of Manchester to foster collaboration on precision agriculture technologies

From Monday 11 March – Friday 15 March, four academics from the University of Manchester will be visiting the Faculty of Veterinary and Agricultural Sciences (FVAS) and the Melbourne School of Engineering (MSE).

The purpose of the visit is to develop connections for future collaboration and funding application for the development of cost-effective sensor systems and networks for scalable precision agriculture programs.

The visiting academics, based in the e-Agri Sensors Centre in the Manchester School of Electrical and Electronic Engineering (EEE), are:

Dr Helen Suter and Alexis Pang from FVAS, along with Associate Professor Dongryeol Ryu from MSE were awarded funding under the University of Melbourne – University of Manchester Research Fund to foster the collaboration.

Precision agriculture research at the University of Melbourne.
Precision agriculture research at the University of Melbourne. Photo: Associate Professor Dongryeol Ryu.

A reciprocal visit of University of Melbourne staff to the University of Manchester will be undertaken later in the year.

The long-term aim of this project is to research, develop and proliferate low cost sensor systems and networks for precision agriculture that can be easily used and will be readily adopted by farmers in developed and developing countries.

Precision agriculture has been commonly heralded as the key to unlock the challenge of sustainable growth of agricultural production,  which is recognised as a “wicked problem” that resists traditional linear, analytical approaches.

However, application of precision agriculture has remained in the realm of large, wealthy, early-adopter regions and producers which are able to realise the benefits of economies of scale in productive capital and labour, big data use and market influence.

The reciprocal visits and meetings will support precision agriculture to play an integral role in addressing the University of Melbourne’s Grand Challenge of supporting sustainability and resilience and the University of Manchester’s global inequalities Research Beacon.

For further details, please contact Helen Suter or Alexis Pang in FVAS.

Banner image: Associate Professor Dongryeol Ryu.