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Last update: May 2021

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Plantes et Système de cultures Horticoles

Zone de texte éditable et éditée et rééditée

CESCI : Conception and Evaluation of Horticultural Cropping Systems and ideotypes

The research conducted by our team aims to design new production strategies that combine the principles of agronomy and ecology in order to respond to environmental challenges by developing sustainable and economically competitive horticultural cropping systems.

The team uses a systemic approach to integrate the interactions between the different components of horticultural agro-ecosystems, taking into account the cultural practices and the different scales of space and time. It aims to valorize ecological functions in order to reduce the use of synthetic inputs i.e. phytosanitary products, and to optimize the agricultural use of some resources (irrigation water, energy, etc.).

Within this framework, the research objectives of the team are:

  • to integrate scientific and technical knowledge in order to develop approaches and tools that can be suitable to design innovative horticultural cropping systems and ideotypes adapted to new challenges
  • to implement these innovative systems in order to evaluate their agronomic, economic, environmental and socio-technical performances according to production contexts. Particular attention is paid to the quantity and quality of production, to the impacts of crop protection strategies on biological communities, and to various ecosystem services.

The team combines different approaches and methods within the framework of its research activities, in close interaction with the other teams of the PSH Unit: 

  • We work for the integration of scientific knowledge, in particular through the models developed in the Unit and the expert knowledge of our partners in technical institutes and advisory services,
  • We develop two main approaches for horticultural cropping systems design and evaluation:

-      A model-based design coupling mathematical models and multi-objective optimization methods and allowing in silico design of technical or landscape scenarios and the search for innovative varietal ideotypes

-      A prototyping design and the experimental implementation of horticultural cropping systems prototypes in close collaboration with other research units,

  • We assess of the effects of agricultural practices on different communities ( collaboration with team 3)
  • We analyze the conflicts and synergies between performance criteria in order to develop optimal combinations of techniques leading to innovative and sustainable systems in context of emerging issues such as the fostering of ecosystem services.
  • We take into account the complexity of horticultural agroecosystems in order to be able to document the "design" of new systems that are part of the agro-ecological transition.

CESCI staff: click here

Scientific publications of CESCI members, from 2017 to now