Evaluation and design of cropping systems

Last changed: 05 March 2024

We evaluate cropping systems at the field, farm, and landscape level to support their optimisation and redesign for the future.

Different approaches to combining crop species in time and space affect the supportive and competing interactions and possibilities to benefit (directly and indirectly) from one crop to another in the cropping system. This also influences the need for farm inputs such as nutrient sources, crop protection, and labour, ultimately impacting the sustainability and productivity of the cropping system.

In our research, we evaluate the effects of cropping system designs at the field, farm and landscape level and the contributing mechanisms. We seek ways to optimise the beneficial interactions and minimise the negative ones through system redesign and communicate this with a diverse range of stakeholders.

By combining data from field trials, interviewing farmers, using advanced statistical methods and models, we produce agronomic and environmental evidence that allow proper comparison and support decision making.

Ongoing projects

  • Improving sustainability of agriculture and food systems through circular principles – benchmarking and designing alternatives, funded by August T. Larsson Foundation. Martin Van Ittersum (Wageningen University, Guest Professor SLU), Ingrid Öborn, Göran Bergkvist, et al.)
  • Constraints on the expansion of organic farming in Sweden, funded by Formas (led by Lund University), Rafaelle Reumaux (PhD student), Ingrid Öborn, Sigrun Dahlin, Christine Watson
  • Evaluation of the effects of rotations with and without ley at different N fertilisation rates after 50 years, funded by SLU Long-Term Field Experiments (R4-1103). Fatima El Khosht (PhD student), Ingrid Öborn, Sigrun Dahlin, Christine Watson, Göran Bergkvist
  • Double cropping of cereals, Funded by Ekhaga Foundation. Elsa Lagerquist, in collaboration with Vidar and Lova Brodin at Miljömatematik.
  • Market-based Agroforestry for Livelihoods, Sustainable Development & Resilience (2 projects in Vietnam), ‘Agroforestry for sustainable livelihoods, environmental resilience and climate change adaptation’ funded by the Swedish Research Council VR; and ‘Can agroforestry contribute to sustainable development in sloping upland areas of the Mekong region?’ Funded by Formas. Sigrun Dahlin, Ingrid Öborn, Göran Bergkvist, Thuong Pham Huu (PhD student), Hung Do Van.
  • UPSCALE – Upscaling the benefits of push-pull technology for sustainable agricultural intensification in East Africa, funded by Horizon Europe (led by Justus Liebig University of Gießen), Sigrun Dahlin, Shem Kuyah, et al.

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