Operational Mapping/Monitoring of Agricultural Crops in South/Southeast Asian Countries –Research Needs and Priorities

Meeting Location: 
New Delhi, India
Meeting date: 
Tuesday, May 2, 2017 to Thursday, May 4, 2017

Workshop Objectives

South/Southeast Asian countries are growing rapidly in terms of population, industrialization and urbanization. One of the key challenges in the region is food security. Although the total food production has increased in the region because of additional land area converted to agricultural land use during 1960’s till 2000, the food production in the recent times has slowed down mostly due to loss of agricultural lands related to increasing urbanization and industrialization. Further, the weather and climate systems in the region are driven primarily by monsoon variability and extreme weather events resulting in droughts or flooding can impact agricultural production. In the region, monitoring the agricultural crop production in a timely manner is essential to predict and prepare for disruptions in the food supply. Further, improved and up-to-date information on agricultural land cover and associated land use practices can help in understanding the role and response of the agricultural sector to environmental change issues for improved management purposes.

Despite the progress in remote sensing and geospatial technologies, little emphasis has been placed on developing robust methods for operational mapping/monitoring of cropped areas. In most of countries in  South/Southeast Asia, the mapping efforts have focused on the classification of land cover types and generalize cropland areas into a single or limited number of thematic classes.  Crop-related LULC information is currently limited to very few countries in South/Southeast Asia. In the region, there is an urgent need to enhance national and regional operational systems for monitoring of agricultural crops. Transitioning appropriate methods developed in the research domain into operational systems is a challenge for all countries but can provide improvements in timely and valuable information for agricultural production, management and policy-making useful to address food security issues. 

The aim of this workshop is to review the availability, potential and limitations of different remote sensing data sources and methodologies for agricultural applications in South/Southeast Asia. The workshop presentations will focus on synergies among various approaches and provide recommendations on how to improve the role of earth observations, ground data and modeling techniques to map and monitor crop growth parameters in space and time. The workshop will bring together experts from both developed and developing countries to identify data gaps and needs related to operational mapping/monitoring of cropped areas in the South/Southeast Asia region. In addition, important agricultural application topics relating to remote sensing of agriculture i.e., crop identification and crop phenology/growth mapping/monitoring, yield estimation/prediction, key biophysical, biochemical and environmental parameters governing crop production, crop damage/disaster monitoring, precision farming, crop residue management, etc., will be discussed.  

The workshop will provide a forum to interact with South/Southeast Asia researchers involved in the SARI (South/Southeast Asia Research Initiative) and other international programs including GEOGLAM, SERVIR, NASA LCLUC, GOFC-GOLD, GLP, etc. Important needs and priorities for developing remote sensing-based operational crop mapping/monitoring systems in South/Southeast Asian countries will be identified involving agricultural experts from the above international programs, researchers from the national space and agrciultgural agencies and local Universities. 

Workshop Venue: Guru Gobind Singh Indraprastha University, Sec 16C, New Delhi 110078, India 

International Steering Committee

Dr. Krishna Prasad Vadrevu, Remote Sensing Scientist, NASA Marshall Space Flight Center, Huntsville, Alabama, USA, Phone: 256-321-9492; and Adjunct Associate Professor, Dept. of Geographical Sciences, University of Maryland College Park, USA; Email: krisvkp@umd.edu

Dr. Chris Justice, Professor, Department of Geographical Sciences, University of Maryland College Park (UMCP), NASA LCLUC Project Scientist, the GEOGLAM Program, 4321 Hartwick Road, Suite 400, College Park, Maryland, 20740, USA, Phone: 301.405.4050; Email: cjustice@umd.edu

Dr. Rama Nemani, Senior Earth Scientist, Ecological Forecasting Laboratory, NASA Ames Research Center, MS 242-4, Moffett Field, CA 94035, Phone: (650) 604-6185;
Email: rama.nemani@nasa.gov

Dr. Thenkabail Prasad, Research Geographer, U. S. Geological Survey (USGS), 2255, N. Gemini Drive, Flagstaff, AZ 86001, USA, Phone: 928-556-7221 (land); 928-380-9965 (cell); Email: pthenkabail@usgs.gov

Dr. Ruth DeFries, Professor of Sustainable Development, Department of Ecology, Evolution, and Environmental Biology (E3B), Columbia University, 10th Floor Schermerhorn Ext., 1200 Amsterdam Avenue, New York, NY 10027; Phone: 212-851-1647; Email: rd2402@col.umbia.edu

Local Steering Committee

Prof. JK Garg
Professor, Environment Management
University School of Environment Management
GGS Indraprastha University
Sec 16C, Dwarka, New Delhi 110078, India
Phone: +91-9313583845; +91-11-25302371 (Office)
Email: gargjk@gmail.com

For local logistics, please contact Prof. Garg; Email:gargjk@gmail.com

Dr. Shibendu S. Ray, Director , Mahalanobis National Crop Forecast Centre (MNCFC)
Ministry of Agriculture, Near Krishi Vistar Sadan,
IARI Pusa Campus, New Delhi-110012, India
Phone: 9871963449 Email: shibendu.ray@gmail.com

Prof. Vinay K. Sehgal, 
Professor, Division of Agricultural Physics,
ICAR- Indian Agricultural Research Institute, New Delhi – 110 012
Phone: 9899034144  Email : vksehgal@gmail.com

Meeting Participation (by Invitation Only)

Meeting Registration


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