Research Thesis Topic
Ecosystem Services and Resilient Farming Systems
Natural ecosystems play a key role in supporting agricultural production systems through a range of ecosystem services, including carbon storage, soil health, hydrological function, biodiversity, and pest and pollination services. Research undertaken to date in cropping landscapes has increased our understanding of the contribution that natural ecosystems on and around farms make in providing these important services. It has identified and quantified individual services and investigated best management practises to enhance their value. However, rarely does this research focus on the flow of services (and dis-services) between agricultural and natural elements within landscapes or the increased resilience that ecological theory predicts will ensue from integrated management of agri-ecological landscapes. Decision making (from farm level to policy level) in the face of projected increases in climate variability and growing pressure on the natural resource base is also increasingly complex and subject to significant uncertainty (e.g. Brady et al., 2012, 2019).
This research will investigate the interactions between natural environments and crop production systems in agricultural landscapes and develop an integrated systems framework to support decisions aimed at enhancing both environmental and agricultural productivity outcomes at a range of scales from property to landscape level under a range of probable climate and land use/land cover futures.
Potential research students interested in developing a project proposal in this field are invited to contact us to discuss their ideas.
- Institute for Agriculture and the Environment
- International Centre for Applied Climate Sciences
- Agriculture, Land and Farm Management
- Ecological Applications
- Environmental Science and Management
Please review the admission requirements for the academic program associated with this Thesis Topic