End: may 2024
Start: jun 2019
Stepping-up integrated pest management decision support for crop protection.
IPM Decisions aims to accelerate impact from Decision Support Systems (DSS) for Integrated Pest Management (IPM). The project will deliver DSS, data, tools and resources through a pan-European online Platform and an IPM Decisions Network.
|External project link
|IPM Decisions website
|Start - end date
|01.06.2019 - 31.05.2024
|Neil Paveley, ADAS
|Project manager at Nibio
|Division of Biotechnology and Plant Health
|Fungal Plant Pathology in Forestry, Agriculture and Horticulture
|The project is coordinated by RSK ADAS Ltd. (UK), with a consortium of 28 partners (see logos below).
|EUR 5 mill
|Horizon 2020, SFS-06-2018
Decision Support Systems (DSS) can assist on-farm decisions to implement Integrated Pest Management (IPM) against invertebrates, weeds and pathogens.
Project Aim: Increase the impact of on-farm DSS for IPM
What is limiting the impact of DSS?
There are a diverse range of DSS including pest monitoring, simple treatment thresholds, forecasts of prevalence and damage, and systems for comparing treatment options. A major focus is on ensuring that pesticides are used ‘according to need’, and accounting for the reduced need for treatment from integrating genetic, cultural and chemical control.
There are some excellent examples of crop protection DSS which are well tested and implemented, but the impact of DSS has been constrained by:
- Regional fragmentation of DSS development and user communities, limiting awareness and access to what is available
- Lack of quantification of the economic and environmental benefits of using DSS - often limited by access to sufficiently large datasets across a wide range of sites and seasons
- Inadequate testing of DSS for accuracy and predictive value (also data limited)
- Short-term funding curtailing long-term updating and user support
- DSS addressing single pests, whilst farmer decisions need to account for multiple pests
- DSS which are insufficiently risk-averse to meet farmer needs for protection against economic loss
What will IPM Decisions deliver?
The project will bring together expertise and resources to address these limitations. We will increase impact from IPM DSS by delivering DSS, data, tools and resources through a pan-European online Platform and an IPM Decisions Network. The latter forming a community of users and stakeholders. Users will be farmers and advisers, and applied research or industry organisations that deliver or develop DSS.
Each type of user will access the Platform via a tailored ‘dashboard’, specific to their requirements. The dashboard which will act as the user’s control panel to collate information and manage DSS applications.
- Farmer and adviser end users of DSS will benefit from a simple ‘click and go’ platform to find and run decision systems which have been evaluated for use under their regional conditions, and giving access to relevant weather data. The extent of testing and economic benefits from use of each DSS will be transparent, to enable informed choices.
- Applied research or advisory organisations wishing to adopt DSS developed in other countries and test/compare them for their regional conditions, will benefit from access to decision systems, weather data, a data set of field pest observations from large numbers of sites and seasons, and a library of methods for evaluation and comparison of benefits.
- Researchers will be enabled to adapt decision models to their regional conditions (either by changing parameter values via a dashboard or making structural changes by having access to the code of open-source decision models) and rapidly evaluate the effect of the changes using the library of methods for evaluation and comparison of benefits described above.
- Developers of farm DSS will benefit by a ‘shop window’ to access more end users, and tools and resources (for example, access to code for open source decision models) to accelerate DSS innovation.
The IPM Decisions project will not develop new DSS, the focus will be on delivering existing and future DSS for key pests (invertebrates, weeds and diseases) of major outdoor crops. The Platform will support a wide range of DSS which are free to use or commercial pay to use. Platform software will be open source. Scientific publications and research data generated during the project will be open access.
Why is a pan-European DSS platform needed?
Developers of DSS put a large investment into producing systems which are provided to end users free or as a paid service. Developers undertake common activities, such as optimising DSS, testing performance, maximising uptake by users and ensuring reliable decisions in extreme seasons (to ensure continued use). Some DSS developers have already decided that these activities are better achieved by joining together into wider geographic collaborations and platforms. The proposed ‘IPM Decisions’ platform extends this concept across Europe.
What organisations are running the project?
The project has participants from applied research, crop protection industry, ICT, meteorological services, government policy, farming, advice and extension (see logos below) in 13 countries.
How to engage with the project if you are a farmer, adviser or DSS provider?
We want to ensure that the project does useful work and maximises practical impact, by engaging with the European community of DSS providers, and farmer and agronomist users of DSS.
- In late 2019 and early 2020, workshops across Europe will describe the project and get feedback from DSS providers and end users, to guide priorities.
- The Annex (below) describes how the project will work with DSS developers and providers, to ensure mutual interests are protected.
- Small groups of users will have access to early versions of the Platform and Dashboards for testing.
- Workshops across Europe will raise awareness of IPM DSS and help users to get started, working with existing DSS.
- The IPM Decisions Platform and Dashboards will go live in 2022.
- Online webinars, videos and guides will ‘walk users through’.
- On-farm demonstrations of DSS will be supported through the second phase of H2020 funding, to develop an IPM farm demonstration network.
Visit the project website www.IPMDecisions.net for information on upcoming workshops, updates, and links to social media and online information.
IPM Decisions Network lead and central Europe co-ordinator: Harm Brinks (H.Brinks@delphy.nl)
Network northern Europe co-ordinator: Bjorn Anderson (Bjorn.LE.Andersson@slu.se)
Network southern Europe co-ordinator: Ilias Travlos (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Technical contacts: Tor-Einar (email@example.com), Dave Skirvin (Dave.Skirvin@adas.co.uk)
Project lead: Neil Paveley (firstname.lastname@example.org)