Dssat

University of Madrid, Spain

A. Iglesias

Several work agreements were achieved between the AGRIDEMA consortium and most of the contacted "developers", pointing out the "developers" participation in the AGRIDEMA courses, as well as their future support of the "Pilot Assessments" to be conducted by the "users" in the framework of AGRIDEMA.

4.3.2 Identifying and Contacting Users

Mediterranean countries could face the highest negative consequences of global warming within Europe, through water-shortage and crop-water requirements increments. Besides, since climate-change and extreme events effects could be more serious in countries with less-developed agriculture, the EU associated countries from Central and Eastern Europe, with relative reduced technological capacities, would be more affected than Northern-European countries. Therefore, AGRIDEMA focuses on "users" coming from Southern, Central and Eastern Europe, as well as from the countries of the Mediterranean area.

The members of the AGRIDEMA consortium released a call to "users" applicants since April 2005. Relevant institutions were contacted, according to AGRIDEMA partner's experience, as well as official centres depending on the Countries' Ministries of Agriculture or similar institutions.

The call was published also using all the available means, including email lists and internet facilities. As pointed out by the three AGRIDEMA partners during their first meeting, the basic criteria for selecting the "users" institutions to be involved in the proposal were:

i. To be able to communicate in English and to be able to work with data management software (Windows, Excel, etc.).

ii. To be involved with local agricultural decision-making, advising and farming.

iii. To be aware about the potential benefits of agricultural decision modelling tools, being able to identify which agricultural management options should be change and how to optimise management and reduce climate risk of local agricultural production.

iv. To have available data for the training course and for the potential conducting the SSA pilot assessments (crop growth and yields, meteorological variables, soil properties, irrigation and crop management scheduling, etc).

Additionally, users conducting PhD studies in the same subjects of AGRIDEMA activities will be especially considered for invitation.

4.3.3 The AGRIDEMA Courses on Climate and Crop-Growth Simulation Tools

The Courses were held in Vienna in November-December 2005, as scheduled in the proposal. Since many applications to the AGRIDEMA courses were received from "users" out of the targeted countries, the AGRIDEMA partners decided to include these applicants also without any course fee, if they were able to support their trips and lodging expenses. Finally, 44 "users" were present in total, from more than 15 different countries. Sixteen "users" were fully supported by AGRIDEMA and other eight were partially supported by the SSA. A picture showing all the participants in the AGRIDEMA courses is depicted in Figure 2.

Institutions from several countries decided to support additional participants in AGRIDEMA courses. Particularly, the participation of five Spanish researchers was supported by the INIA AC05-008 complementary action. Besides, several students and researchers from BOKU, Austria, were in the courses too.

The AGRIDEMA web page (www.agridema.com) shows all the details of Courses held in Vienna; as the lectures program, time schedule, invited developers, participant users, etc. The courses on Climate tools comprise lectures on climate change scenarios, dynamical and statistical downscaling, as well as weather generators. The details and work-performance of quite known crop-growth models as SIRIUS, DSSAT, CROPSYST and WOFOST; among others, were shown too.

4.3.4 The Agridema Pilot Assessments

The AGRIDEMA pilot assessments were basically applications conducted by some of the "users" that attended the AGRIDEMA courses on climate and crop-growth simulation tools that were held in Vienna ending 2005. Assessments were made using existing data and were addressed to relevant issues concerning climate risks and agricultural decision-making in their respective countries and institutions.

The following issues were considered in the Assessments propositions:

• Local modelling comparisons and validations using available data will be encouraged as the agreement subjects.

• All the collaborations must identify clearly the potential benefits of these modelling applications for local agricultural decision-making. Particularly, those applications which include farmers from regional medium and small enterprises, as potential users of the tested tools, will be better considered for funding.

• Educational outputs, such as Ph. D. studies connected to the work agreements are highly desirable.

• Only original and different propositions can be supported.

The selection of the pilot assessments was based on the propositions that the "users" made at the end of the AGRIDEMA courses. The selection was geographically made. The AGRIDEMA consortium partners considered the available budget and the agreements among them during their first meeting.

Eight assessments were selected in the Mediterranean area, although only six were funded (those not leaded by ITACyL). Five assessments were conducted in Central Europe and three in Eastern Europe. The SSA coordinator gave priority to cooperation and exchange among the Mediterranean "users", as well as funding dissemination activities, rather than to support ITACyL researches that have other funding possibilities. Furthermore, ITACyL received additional funds from the Spanish government to strength the cooperation with the Spanish institutions working in AGRIDEMA Pilot Assessments (Complementary Action CGL2006-26211-E) as well as with the Mediterranean countries involved (International Complementary Action PCI2005-A7-0105).

The Pilot assessments were conducted from March to October 2006. The AGRIDEMA support was based on agreements to be signed between each "user" conducting Pilot assessments and the corresponding partner of the AGRIDEMA consortium. The Pilot assessments information can be seen in the AGRIDEMA web page: www.agridema.org.

The complete lists of the funded AGRIDEMA Pilot assessments can be seen below.

Table 3: Pilot Assessments conducted in the framework of AGRIDEMA Mediterranean area (under the responsibility of the Spanish partner)

Title

Presenter Name

Institution

Full irrigation estimates and palliative measurements for coping with climate change in vineyard and peach orchards in Spain: a past tendency towards a future perspective

Jordi Marsal

IRTA, Spain

Optimizing irrigation water management on the global change context in a Mediterranean region

Jose A. Rodriguez

DAP, Andalusia, Spain

Estimating climate-change effects on Sugarbeet irrigation efficiency in the Spanish Northern Plateau

Blanca del Rio

ITACyL, Spain

Adaptations of irrigated cropping systems of Southern Italy as affected by climate change at field/farm scale

Domenico Ventrella

CRA-ISA, Italy

Assessment of the Impact of Climate Change on Water Productivity in Rainfed Wheat Systems in the Mediterranean region

Fatema Mosseddaq

IAV Hassan II, Morocco

Assessment of the Impact of Climate Change on Water Productivity in Irrigated potatoes in the Southern Mediterranean region

Mahmoud Medany

CLAC, Egypt

Estimation of water availability for annual crops at Tree -Crop ecosystems

Dimos Anastasiou

NAGREF, FDA, Greece

*Conducting a Ph D in this issue

*Conducting a Ph D in this issue

Central Europe (under the responsibility of the Austrian partner)

Title

Presenter Name

Institution

Modelling of the maize production and the impact of climate change on maize yields in Croatia

Visnja Vucetic

Meteorological Service of Croatia

Irrigation in different Climate conditions using crop models

Blaz Kurnik

EARS (Met. Office, Slovenia)

Introducing crop modeling tools into a Serbian crop production

Branislava Lalic

University of Novi Sad, Novi Sad, Serbia and Montenegro

Determination of the water demand and use of various crops in the region Lake Neusiedl and Seewinkel

Ildikó Dobi Gerhard Kubu

Hungarian Meteorological Service; Univ. of Natural Resources and Appl. Life Sciences, BOKU

Modelling of crop yields in the present and future climatic conditions in WIELKOPOLSKA REGION (POLAND) with and without irrigation management practices

Jacek Lesny

Agricultural University of Poznan

Eastern Europe (under the responsibility of the Bulgarian partner)

Title

Presenter Name

Institution

Impact of climate factors on grain yield of spring barley in Latvia

Jelena Korolova

Latvia University of Agriculture (LUA)

Climate variability and change over the Balkan peninsula and related impacts on crops

Stanislava Radeva

NIMH, Bulgaria

Complex assessment the efficiency of adaptation of agricultural ecosystems to climate change in the European part of Russia based on integration with European crop models

Vladimir Romanenkov

All-Russian Institute for Agrochemistry

*Conducting a Ph D in this issue

*Conducting a Ph D in this issue

The reports of the AGRIDEMA Pilot assessments, which can be downloaded from the AGRIDEMA web, comprise an excellent collection of many different applications from several European and Mediterranean countries, all of them addressed to local potential climate-risks. The strategic AGRIDEMA goal, which aims to promote a research network, linking European modelling tool-providers and developers with the potential users of their research results, has been already partially fulfilled.

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