42 Conservation Agriculture for Improving Food Security and Livelihoods of Rural Smallholders In Rainfed Regions of Africa, Asia, Latin America and the Caribbean
Oral SessionSpecial Sessions Conservation agriculture refers to agricultural systems that minimize tillage, retain permanent soil cover, and utilize crop rotations or mixtures. With the advent of sophisticated machinery, herbicides, and genetically-modified crops, conservation agriculture has been widely adopted especially by large-scale farmers in more than 105 million ha worldwide. It is still unclear, however, if conservation agriculture practices are suited for resource-poor farmers in the developing world because of biophysical, social, economic and gender barriers. Traditional farming practices among the bottom billion typically include total soil inversion, competing use of crop residues, and cultivation of food/cash crops with exclusion of non-edible crops. In this symposium, the opening session will provide scientific and development-oriented insights of conservation agriculture as well as USAID perspectives on the topic within the context of sustainable intensification in the Feed the Future initiative. Then, keynote speakers will open sub sessions with 30-minute presentations highlighting long-term experiences and knowledge on biophysical and socio-economic aspects of conservation agriculture. This will be followed by 20-minute presentations, during which researchers will present key findings from ongoing projects on conservation agriculture that involve collaboration between U.S. universities and host-country partners in Africa, Asia, Latin America and the Caribbean. Research results will cover farming practices, soil quality, crop yields, resilience, field- and farm-level production systems, economic impact, as well as gender-related and social network factors that contribute to the success or failure of conservation agriculture practices in disadvantaged regions of the world.
Cosponsor(s):Agronomic Production Systems, Education & Extension, Global Agronomy, Land Management & Conservation, Soil Fertility & Plant Nutrition, Soil & Water Management & Conservation