Staff Publications

Staff Publications

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    'Staff publications' is the digital repository of Wageningen University & Research

    'Staff publications' contains references to publications authored by Wageningen University staff from 1976 onward.

    Publications authored by the staff of the Research Institutes are available from 1995 onwards.

    Full text documents are added when available. The database is updated daily and currently holds about 240,000 items, of which 72,000 in open access.

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    OBOR opportunities and challenges for the Dutch Agribusiness Sector
    Zhang, Xiaoyong - \ 2016
    Internationale Spectator 70 (2016)5. - ISSN 0020-9317
    OBOR - Dutch Agribusiness Sector - Agribusiness - One Belt One Road - opportunities - challenges - China - OBOR - Agribusiness - China - One Belt One Road - Agriproducts - opportunities - challenges
    The Netherlands is the second largest exporter of Agriproducts in the world.
    However, its export volume to China is insignificant. The ‘One Belt One Road’
    initiative (OBOR) provides a great opportunity to increase the volume. But this
    will not be achieved easily. It requires a vision and collective action.
    Learning-induced gene expression in the heads of two Nasonia species that differ in long-term memory formation
    Hoedjes, K.M. ; Smid, H.M. ; Schijlen, E.G.W.M. ; Vet, L.E.M. ; Vugt, J.J.F.A. van - \ 2015
    BMC Genomics 16 (2015). - ISSN 1471-2164
    natural variation - antisense transcription - protein-synthesis - foraging success - parasitic wasps - drosophila - vitripennis - pathway - consolidation - opportunities
    Background Cellular processes underlying memory formation are evolutionary conserved, but natural variation in memory dynamics between animal species or populations is common. The genetic basis of this fascinating phenomenon is poorly understood. Closely related species of Nasonia parasitic wasps differ in long-term memory (LTM) formation: N. vitripennis will form transcription-dependent LTM after a single conditioning trial, whereas the closely-related species N. giraulti will not. Genes that were differentially expressed (DE) after conditioning in N. vitripennis, but not in N. giraulti, were identified as candidate genes that may regulate LTM formation. Results RNA was collected from heads of both species before and immediately, 4 or 24 hours after conditioning, with 3 replicates per time point. It was sequenced strand-specifically, which allows distinguishing sense from antisense transcripts and improves the quality of expression analyses. We determined conditioning-induced DE compared to naïve controls for both species. These expression patterns were then analysed with GO enrichment analyses for each species and time point, which demonstrated an enrichment of signalling-related genes immediately after conditioning in N. vitripennis only. Analyses of known LTM genes and genes with an opposing expression pattern between the two species revealed additional candidate genes for the difference in LTM formation. These include genes from various signalling cascades, including several members of the Ras and PI3 kinase signalling pathways, and glutamate receptors. Interestingly, several other known LTM genes were exclusively differentially expressed in N. giraulti, which may indicate an LTM-inhibitory mechanism. Among the DE transcripts were also antisense transcripts. Furthermore, antisense transcripts aligning to a number of known memory genes were detected, which may have a role in regulating these genes. Conclusion This study is the first to describe and compare expression patterns of both protein-coding and antisense transcripts, at different time points after conditioning, of two closely related animal species that differ in LTM formation. Several candidate genes that may regulate differences in LTM have been identified. This transcriptome analysis is a valuable resource for future in-depth studies to elucidate the role of candidate genes and antisense transcription in natural variation in LTM formation.
    Food safety and urban food markets in Vietnam: The need for flexible and customized retail modernization policies
    Wertheim-Heck, S.C.O. ; Vellema, S. ; Spaargaren, G. - \ 2015
    Food Policy 54 (2015). - ISSN 0306-9192 - p. 95 - 106.
    supermarkets - opportunities - partnerships - governance - transition - thailand - health - world - rise
    Access to safe and healthy food is a crucial element of food security. In Vietnam the safety of daily vegetables is of great concern to both consumers and policymakers. To mitigate food safety risks, the Vietnamese government enforces rules and regulations and relies strongly on a single approach for organizing food provision; being modernizing retail by replacing wet markets with supermarkets. In general, reorganizing food provision in this way is increasingly considered to be a guarantee for food safety, especially in urban settings with growing populations. To assess the effectiveness of this induced retail modernization of the fresh vegetables market in Vietnam’s capital Hanoi, this paper examines for whom and under which conditions does this approach deliver the desired outcomes. The survey data and interviews show that ongoing retail modernization in Hanoi reaches only a minor segment of the population and drives a large group of shoppers into informal vending structures. On the basis of five case studies, this paper demonstrates how similar supermarket interventions can yield contrasting outcomes when they do not accommodate for differences in shopper population and do not adapt to variations in the urban conditions. To reduce exposure to unsafe food, particularly for poorer segments of the population, we conclude that developing a flexible portfolio of retail modernization pathways and adopting a reflexive policy approach provide better impact and leverage, as opposed to the current trend of promoting supermarkets as a single, ideal-type form of food shopping.
    Exploring climate change impacts and adaptation options for maize production in the Central Rift Valley of Ethiopia using different climate change scenarios and crop models
    Kassie, B.T. ; Asseng, S. ; Rotter, R.P. ; Hengsdijk, H. ; Ruane, A.C. ; Ittersum, M.K. van - \ 2015
    Climatic Change 129 (2015)1-2. - ISSN 0165-0009 - p. 145 - 158.
    africa - yield - agriculture - risks - opportunities - vulnerability - temperatures - uncertainty - variability - projections
    Exploring adaptation strategies for different climate change scenarios to support agricultural production and food security is a major concern to vulnerable regions, including Ethiopia. This study assesses the potential impacts of climate change on maize yield and explores specific adaptation options under climate change scenarios for the Central Rift Valley of Ethiopia by mid-century. Impacts and adaptation options were evaluated using three General Circulation Models (GCMs) in combination with two Representative Concentration Pathways (RCPs) and two crop models. Results indicate that maize yield decreases on average by 20 % in 2050s relative to the baseline (1980–2009) due to climate change. A negative impact on yield is very likely, while the extent of impact is more uncertain. The share in uncertainties of impact projections was higher for the three GCMs than it was for the two RCPs and two crop models used in this study. Increasing nitrogen fertilization and use of irrigation were assessed as potentially effective adaptation options, which would offset negative impacts. However, the response of yields to increased fertilizer and irrigation will be less for climate change scenarios than under the baseline. Changes in planting dates also reduced negative impacts, while changing the maturity type of maize cultivars was not effective in most scenarios. The multi-model based analysis allowed estimating climate change impact and adaptation uncertainties, which can provide valuable insights and guidance for adaptation planning.
    Multiple benefits and values of trees in urban landscapes in two small towns in northern South Africa
    Shackleton, S. ; Chinyimba, A. ; Hebinck, P.G.M. ; Shackleton, C. ; Kaoma, H. - \ 2015
    Landscape and Urban Planning 136 (2015). - ISSN 0169-2046 - p. 76 - 86.
    public green space - ecology - inequality - key - opportunities - perceptions - environment - ecosystems - resources - forests
    Cities and towns can be conceptualised as complex social-ecological systems or landscapes that are composed of different spatial elements. Trees in urban landscapes provide a variety of tangible and intangible benefits (ecosystem services) that may be valued differently across diverse households and individuals. Here, we consider how the benefits and values of trees to urban residents vary across public and private spaces in three low income neighbourhoods in two medium-sized towns in northern South Africa. We find that the most asset poor residents in informal settlements derive significant benefits from the provisioning services offered by trees in natural green spaces on the ‘urban periphery’; in particular they value supplies of wood for energy, whilst also recognising the importance of regulating services such as shade. Trees in such spaces help these immigrants cope with a lack of infrastructure, services and disposable income after their move to the city. In new, low-cost housing neighbourhoods, the importance of trees in providing shade and shelter in gardens is emphasised due to the hot and dusty nature of these settlements, while residents in older township neighbourhoods make more mention of the aesthetic value of trees in private spaces as well as the fruits they provide. In all neighbourhoods, attitudes towards trees in public spaces were mixed because of their perceived association with crime, although low income households did make extensive use of tree products from natural areas. The relevance of the results for urban planning and greening in low income areas is discussed.
    Vegetable production after flooded rice improves soil properties in the Red River Delta, Vietnam
    Everaarts, A.P. ; Neeteson, J.J. ; Pham Thi Thu, H. ; Struik, P.C. - \ 2015
    Pedosphere 25 (2015)1. - ISSN 1002-0160 - p. 130 - 139.
    sandy loam soil - physical-properties - farming systems - puddling depth - tropical asia - wheat system - constraints - opportunities - management - lowland
    Vegetable production in South East Asia often is in rotation with °ooded rice. The puddling of the soil with flooded rice production may result in unfavourable soil conditions for the subsequent production of dry land crops. To establish whether permanent vegetable production results in favourable soil conditions for vegetables, the effects of five different permanent vegetable production systems and a system of vegetable production in rotation with flooded rice on soil properties after flooded rice were studied in a 2-year field experiment. Bulk density at 0.05{0.10 m depth layer decreased with permanent vegetable production and vegetable production in rotation with flooded rice. The decrease in bulk density was in°uenced by the application of organic manure and rice husks, and especially by the number of crops cultivated, suggesting that frequency of soil tillage had a major effect on bulk density. Ploughing with buffalo traction after flooded rice, in combination with construction of raised beds, could reduce or totally eliminate negative effects of puddling on soil structure. Bulk density at 0.15{0.20 m soil depth was not influenced. Soil acidity decreased significantly in all systems. Soil organic carbon increased in all systems, but significant increase was only found in two permanent vegetable production systems. Available phosphorus (P) significantly increased in two permanent vegetable production systems, with a positively correlation to the amount of P applied. The significant decrease in bulk density and increase in pH (H2O), after only 2 years, showed that soil conditions after flooded rice could be improved in a short time under intensive vegetable production.
    Free and open-access satellite data are key to biodiversity conservation
    Turner, W. ; Rondinini, C. ; Pettorelli, N. ; Mora, B. ; Leidner, A.K. ; Szantoi, Z. ; Buchanan, G. ; Dech, S. ; Dwyer, J. ; Herold, M. ; Koh, L.P. ; Leimgruber, P. ; Taubenboeck, H. ; Wegmann, M. ; Wikelski, M. ; Woodcock, C. - \ 2015
    Biological Conservation 182 (2015). - ISSN 0006-3207 - p. 173 - 176.
    landsat imagery - cover change - science - opportunities - challenges - support - system
    Satellite remote sensing is an important tool for monitoring the status of biodiversity and associated environmental parameters, including certain elements of habitats. However, satellite data are currently underused within the biodiversity research and conservation communities. Three factors have significant impact on the utility of remote sensing data for tracking and understanding biodiversity change. They are its continuity, affordability, and access. Data continuity relates to the maintenance of long-term satellite data products. Such products promote knowledge of how biodiversity has changed over time and why. Data affordability arises from the cost of the imagery. New data policies promoting free and open access to government satellite imagery are expanding the use of certain imagery but the number of free and open data sets remains too limited. Data access addresses the ability of conservation biologists and biodiversity researchers to discover, retrieve, manipulate, and extract value from satellite imagery as well as link it with other types of information. Tools are rapidly improving access. Still, more cross-community interactions are necessary to strengthen ties between the biodiversity and remote sensing communities.
    Reducing emissions from land use in Indonesia: motivation, policy instruments and expected funding streams
    Noordwijk, M. van; Agus, F. ; Dewi, S. ; Purnomo, H. - \ 2014
    Mitigation and Adaptation Strategies for Global Change 19 (2014)6. - ISSN 1381-2386 - p. 677 - 692.
    redd plus - forest degradation - multifunctional landscapes - southeast-asia - carbon stocks - co2 emissions - fallow model - deforestation - opportunities - incentives
    Land-based emissions of carbon dioxide derive from the interface of forest and agriculture. Emission estimates require harmonization across forest and non-forest data sources. Furthermore, emission reduction requires understanding of the linked causes and policy levers between agriculture and forestry. The institutional forestry traditions dominated the emergence of the discourse on Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and forest Degradation (REDD+) whilemore holistic perspectives on land-based emissions, including agriculture, found a home in international recognition for Nationally Appropriate Mitigation Actions (NAMAs). We tested the hypothesis that, at least for Indonesia, the NAMA framework provides opportunities to resolve issues that REDD+ alone cannot address.We reviewed progress on five major challenges identified in 2007 by the Indonesian Forest Climate Alliance: 1) scope and ‘forest’ definition; 2) ownership and tenurial rights; 3) multiplicity and interconnectedness of drivers; 4) peatland issues across forest and non-forest land categories; and 5) fairness and efficiency of benefitdistribution mechanisms across conservation, degradation and restoration phases of tree-cover transition. Results indicate that the two policy instruments developed in parallel with competition rather than synergy. Three of the REDD+ challenges can be resolved by treating REDD+ as a subset of the NAMA and national emission reduction plans for Indonesia.We conclude that two issues, rights and benefit distribution, remain a major challenge, and require progress on a motivational pyramid of policy and polycentric governance. National interest in retaining global palm oil exports gained priority over expectations of REDD forest rents. Genuine concerns over climate change motivate a small but influential part of the ongoing debate.
    Epilogue: global food security, rhetoric, and the sustainable intensification debate
    Kuijper, T.W.M. ; Struik, P.C. - \ 2014
    Current Opinion in Environmental Sustainability 8 (2014). - ISSN 1877-3435 - p. 71 - 79.
    green-revolution - agricultural intensification - ecological intensification - 9 billion - systems - agroecology - challenges - opportunities - perspective - agronomy
    The need to feed nine billion people in 2050 has given rise to widespread debate in science and policy circles. The debate is largely framed in neo-Malthusian terms, and elements of global food security (resilience of the food system, food quantity and quality, right to and access to food) demand equal attention. High-intensive agriculture, which enabled population growth and food for a large proportion of the global population, is often regarded as incompatible with current environmental (and social) sustainability. Because of the often problematic nature of high-intensive industrialized agriculture, sustainable agricultural intensification has been called an oxymoron. Pathways to sustainably intensify agriculture vary from business-as-usual to claims that a radical rethinking of our agricultural production is imperative. Three terms have been coined to differentiate such pathways. Whereas conventional intensification, that is business-as-usual, is uncontroversial (but often considered unlikely to be able to achieve environmental sustainability), the phrases sustainable intensification and ecological intensification both have a complex history. Although one could think that they have similar meanings, the phrases represent very different perspectives in discourses in science and policy circles. The terms Utopians and Arcadians are introduced for adherents of those perspectives. We observe that they both devote insufficient attention to inevitable trade-offs. Agricultural intensification in developing countries was greatly accelerated by the Green Revolution, which largely bypassed sub-Saharan Africa. Discontent with that outcome has led to a plethora of new terms to indicate more successful next steps for sub-Saharan agriculture. Industrialized agriculture as currently practised in developed countries will not provide a universal solution. This epilogue of the special issue and the literature herein show that intense debates on sustainable agricultural intensification are needed. Such debates on intensification demand reflection on the role of scientists with regard to their uses of current and the generation of novel knowledge.
    Selection of crop cultivars suited to the location combined with astute management can reduce crop yield penalties in pasture cropping systems
    Thomass, D.R. ; Lawes, R.A. ; Descheemaeker, K.K.E. ; Moore, A.D. - \ 2014
    Crop and Pasture Science 65 (2014)10. - ISSN 1836-0947 - p. 1022 - 1032.
    water-use - mediterranean climate - western-australia - farming systems - wheat yield - livestock - lucerne - profitability - opportunities
    Pasture cropping is an emerging farming-systems practice of southern Australia, in which winter grain crops are sown into an established stand of a winter-dormant, summer-growing perennial pasture. There is a pressing need to define times, locations and climates that are suitable for pasture cropping. To evaluate effects of management interventions, agro-environment, and possible interactions on crop and pasture productivity associated with pasture cropping, an AusFarm® simulation model was built to describe a pasture-cropping system based on annual crop and subtropical grass. The model was parameterised using data from field research on pasture cropping with barley cv. Buloke and a C4 subtropical grass, Gatton panic (Panicum maximum cv. Gatton), conducted at Moora, Western Australia. The simulation was run over 50 years using the historical climate data of five southern Australian locations (Cunderdin, Jerdacuttup, Mingenew, and Moora in Western Australia, and Karoonda in South Australia). Two wheat cultivars and one barley crop were considered for each location, to examine the impact of crop phenology on this farming system. Jerdacuttup and Moora favoured pasture cropping, with average barley-yield penalties of 10 and 12%. These locations were characterised by colder growing seasons, more plant-available water at anthesis, and more winter–spring rain. The cereal crops did not rely on stored soil moisture, growing instead on incident rain. The winter–spring growth of the Gatton panic pasture was highest at Mingenew. This generated a high yield penalty, 38% loss under pasture cropping, compared with the other locations. Changing the efficacy of a herbicide application to the pasture when the crop was sown had a strong effect on yield. Yield penalties at Moora and Mingenew reduced to 7 and 29%, respectively, when the proportion of live biomass killed by the herbicide was doubled. Utilisation of soil moisture by the Gatton panic pasture during summer and early autumn had little effect on subsequent grain yield, whereas reduced pasture growth during the winter–spring growing period had a substantial effect on crop yield. Pasture cropping can therefore succeed in agro-climatic regions where crops can be grown on incident rain and pasture growth is suppressed through low temperature or herbicide. Perennial pasture growth should be minimised during the crop growing period through the management of crop sowing date, nitrogen fertiliser application and C4 grass suppression to minimise the effect on stored soil water at crop anthesis.
    Volume, value and floristic diversity of Gabon's medicinal plant markets
    Towns, A.M. ; Quiroz Villarreal, D.K. ; Guinee, L. ; Boer, H. ; Andel, T. van - \ 2014
    Journal of Ethnopharmacology 155 (2014)2. - ISSN 0378-8741 - p. 1184 - 1193.
    timber forest products - south-africa - eastern-cape - trade - benin - opportunities - province
    Ethnopharmacological relevance - African medicinal plant markets offer insight into commercially important species, salient health concerns in the region, and possible conservation priorities. Still, little quantitative data is available on the trade in herbal medicine in Central Africa. The aim of this study was to identify the species, volume, and value of medicinal plant products sold on the major domestic markets in Gabon, Central Africa. Materials and methods - We surveyed 21 herbal market stalls across 14 of the major herbal medicine markets in Gabon, collected vouchers of medicinal plants and documented uses, vernacular names, prices, weight, vendor information and weekly sales. From these quantitative data, we extrapolated volumes and values for the entire herbal medicine market. Results - We encountered 263 medicinal plant products corresponding with at least 217 species. Thirteen species were encountered on one-third of the surveyed stalls and 18 species made up almost 50% of the total volume of products available daily, including the fruits of Tetrapleura tetraptera and seeds of Monodora myristica. Although bark comprised the majority of the floristic diversity (22%) and the highest percentage of daily stock (30%), the resin of IUCN red-listed species Aucoumea klaineana represented 20% of the estimated daily volume of the entire herbal market. Plants sold at the market were mainly used for ritual purposes (32%), followed by women¿s health (13%), and childcare (10%). The presence of migrant herbal vendors selling imported species, especially from Benin, was a prominent feature of the Gabonese markets. Conclusion - An estimated volume of 27 t of medicinal plant products worth US$ 1.5 million is sold annually on the main Gabonese markets. Aucoumea klaineana and Garcinia kola are highlighted as frequently sold species with conservation priorities. The herbal market in Gabon is slightly higher in species diversity but lower in volume and value than recently surveyed sub-Saharan African markets.
    Bioeconomy – an emerging meta-discourse affecting forest discourses?
    Pülzl, H. ; Kleinschmit, D. ; Arts, B.J.M. - \ 2014
    Scandinavian Journal of Forest Research 29 (2014)4. - ISSN 0282-7581 - p. 386 - 393.
    sustainable development - governance - modernization - neoliberalism - opportunities - perspective - movement - policy - trees
    The term bioeconomy and closely related notions like bio-based economy or knowledge-based bioeconomy (KBBE) are increasingly used by scientists and politicians in the last years. It does therefore have the potential of becoming an influential global discourse. Its role is however so far unclear. The general assumption that guides this paper is that discourses, resulting ideas and arguments are generally said to have performative power. They shape actors' views, influence their behaviour, impact on their beliefs and interests and can cause institutional change in a given society. Thus, the aim of this paper is twofold: first, it aims to analyse whether the ideas used in a bioeconomy discourse differs from those in other global meta-discourses of the last decades affecting forest discourses, such as the ecological modernization discourse or the sustainable development discourse. Second, this paper aims to analyse whether and how the bioeconomy discourse has started (or not) to reshape or overshadow the “classical” forest discourses, such as sustainable forest management, forest biodiversity or forest and climate change.
    Response to 'Combining sustainable agricultural production with economic and environmental benefits'
    Sumberg, J. ; Andersson, J.A. ; Giller, K.E. ; Thompson, J. - \ 2013
    Geographical Journal 179 (2013)2. - ISSN 0016-7398 - p. 183 - 185.
    rice intensification sri - conservation agriculture - production systems - management - madagascar - yield - opportunities - farmers - africa - india
    We suggest that a recent commentary piece in The Geographical Journal on Conservation Agriculture (CA) and the System of Rice Intensification (SRI) (Kassam and Brammer 2012 was misleading because it drew very selectively from the literature, and presented its conclusions as both widely accepted and uncontroversial. Kassam and Brammer's intervention in the continuing debates around CA and SRI can be understood as a manifestation of the new ‘contested agronomy’. While Kassam and Brammer call on geographers to do research that will promote the spread of CA and SRI, we suggest that this misconstrues and devalues the potential contribution of geography and social science more generally to agricultural development.
    Benefits of investing in ecosystem restoration
    Groot, R.S. de; Blignaut, J. ; Ploeg, S. van der; Aronson, J. ; Elmqvist, T. ; Farley, J. - \ 2013
    Conservation Biology 27 (2013)6. - ISSN 0888-8892 - p. 1286 - 1293.
    ecological restoration - south-africa - biodiversity - payments - services - opportunities - conservation - metaanalysis - indonesia - working
    Measures aimed at conservation or restoration of ecosystems are often seen as net-cost projects by governments and businesses because they are based on incomplete and often faulty cost-benefit analyses. After screening over 200 studies, we examined the costs (94 studies) and benefits (225 studies) of ecosystem restoration projects that had sufficient reliable data in 9 different biomes ranging from coral reefs to tropical forests. Costs included capital investment and maintenance of the restoration project, and benefits were based on the monetary value of the total bundle of ecosystem services provided by the restored ecosystem. Assuming restoration is always imperfect and benefits attain only 75% of the maximum value of the reference systems over 20 years, we calculated the net present value at the social discount rates of 2% and 8%. We also conducted 2 threshold cum sensitivity analyses. Benefit-cost ratios ranged from about 0.05:1 (coral reefs and coastal systems, worst-case scenario) to as much as 35:1 (grasslands, best-case scenario). Our results provide only partial estimates of benefits at one point in time and reflect the lower limit of the welfare benefits of ecosystem restoration because both scarcity of and demand for ecosystem services is increasing and new benefits of natural ecosystems and biological diversity are being discovered. Nonetheless, when accounting for even the incomplete range of known benefits through the use of static estimates that fail to capture rising values, the majority of the restoration projects we analyzed provided net benefits and should be considered not only as profitable but also as high-yielding investments.
    Exploring different forest definitions and their impact on developing REDD+ reference emission levels: A case study for Indonesia
    Romijn, J.E. ; Ainembabazi, J.H. ; Wijaya, A. ; Herold, M. ; Angelsen, A. ; Verchot, L. ; Murdiyarso, D. - \ 2013
    Environmental Science & Policy 33 (2013). - ISSN 1462-9011 - p. 246 - 259.
    greenhouse-gas emissions - tropical forests - carbon emissions - oil palm - deforestation - degradation - land - opportunities - conversion - cover
    Developing countries participating in the mitigation mechanism of reducing emissions from deforestation and forest degradation and the role of conservation, sustainable management of forests and enhancement of forest carbon stocks (REDD+), need to determine a national forest reference emission level (REL) as part of their national monitoring system, which serves as a benchmark to measure the impact of their REDD+ actions. Using data from Indonesia, we show that the choice of a forest definition can have a large impact on estimates of deforestation and forest degradation areas, on assessment of drivers of deforestation and on the development of a REL. The total area of deforestation between 2000 and 2009 was 4.9 million ha when using the FAO definition, 18% higher when using a ‘natural forest definition’ and 27% higher when using the national definition. Using the national and natural forest definitions, large areas (>50%) were classified as shrubland after deforestation. We used regression models to predict future deforestation. Deforestation was much better predicted than degradation (R2 of 0.81 vs. 0.52), with the natural forest definition giving the best prediction. Apart from historical deforestation and initial forest cover, gross domestic product and human population were important predictors of future deforestation in Indonesia. Degradation processes were less well modeled and predictions relied on estimates of historical degradation and forest cover.
    Achievements and challenges of innovation co-production support initiatives in the Australian and Dutch dairy sectors: A comparative study
    Klerkx, L.W.A. ; Nettle, R. - \ 2013
    Food Policy 40 (2013). - ISSN 0306-9192 - p. 74 - 89.
    agricultural-research - animal production - systems - opportunities - knowledge - industry - milk - netherlands - experiences - management
    Policymakers and innovation scholars share an increasing interest in how to operationalize innovation support given the increasing number and range of stakeholders engaged in co-producing innovation. Using comparative case study analysis, this article examines support initiatives for dairy sector innovation in The Netherlands and Australia, addressing common challenges such as environmental issues, cattle health, new technology, and human resources. To this end, a review was conducted of documented information and articles published on the initiatives. The qualitative analysis focused on how the co-production process was supported and the achievements and challenges associated with each case. Across both countries and between different initiatives, the main achievements were found to be the generation of very different ideas addressing dairy sector challenges and attempting to bridge public and private sector interests. The main challenges included maintaining effort and momentum for high ambition targets and the potential for duplication as stakeholders became enrolled in different initiatives sponsored by different organizations in an increasingly devolved institutional setting. Furthermore, without strong institutional support for innovation co-production processes, individual actors were less able to operate effectively in innovation co-production roles. It is concluded that dairy sector innovation policies should address institutional constraints (e.g. provision of leadership and rewards for involvement in co-production processes), recognize that facilitation of innovation co-production needs to be adequately resourced, enhance support for initiative coordination to avoid duplication of effort, and take into account the specific institutional setting of countries and sectors to guide the design of innovation co-production support initiatives.
    Effective Chikungunya Virus-like Particle Vaccine Produced in Insect Cells
    Metz, S.W.H. ; Gardner, J. ; Geertsema, C. ; Le, T.T. ; Goh, L. ; Vlak, J.M. ; Suhrbier, A. ; Pijlman, G.P. - \ 2013
    PLoS Neglected Tropical Diseases 7 (2013)3. - ISSN 1935-2727
    equine encephalitis-virus - envelope proteins - baculovirus vectors - inactivated vaccine - expression system - dna vaccines - immunogenicity - infection - opportunities - glycosylation
    The emerging arthritogenic, mosquito-borne chikungunya virus (CHIKV) causes severe disease in humans and represents a serious public health threat in countries where Aedes spp mosquitoes are present. This study describes for the first time the successful production of CHIKV virus-like particles (VLPs) in insect cells using recombinant baculoviruses. This well-established expression system is rapidly scalable to volumes required for epidemic responses and proved well suited for processing of CHIKV glycoproteins and production of enveloped VLPs. Herein we show that a single immunization with 1 µg of non-adjuvanted CHIKV VLPs induced high titer neutralizing antibody responses and provided complete protection against viraemia and joint inflammation upon challenge with the Réunion Island CHIKV strain in an adult wild-type mouse model of CHIKV disease. CHIKV VLPs produced in insect cells using recombinant baculoviruses thus represents as a new, safe, non-replicating and effective vaccine candidate against CHIKV infections.
    Typology of Smallholder Production Systems in Small East-African Wetlands
    Sakane, N.S. ; Becker, M. ; Langensiepen, M. ; Wijk, M.T. van - \ 2013
    Wetlands 33 (2013)1. - ISSN 0277-5212 - p. 101 - 116.
    land-cover change - west-africa - management - tanzania - livelihoods - challenges - resource - kenya - sustainability - opportunities
    Small wetlands increasingly become important agricultural production niches in sub-Saharan Africa. Understanding the diversity of these households may help to develop guidelines for their future use. In this study a typology of households in small wetlands was developed using case studies of 275 farmers from Kenya and Tanzania. Based on a combination of production system attributes land resources, and production objectives, households were categorised into 12 farm types. Production resources, access to cropland on upland, access to market, and non-wetland related livelihood strategies differed between households and translated into different wetland use patterns. Farm types were linked to the prevailing wetland systems. The household typology captured various dimensions in values, attitudes, and goals of farmers and determined their influence on land use decisions. The wetland field: farm size ratio differed significantly between farm types. More than one-third of the households depended completely on cropland in the wetland. The variable nature of household dependence was reflected in diverse production orientations with different levels of land use intensity and subsequent pressure on wetlands. The heterogeneity induced agricultural practices among households and the complexity of the wetland system highlight the need for specific incentives to develop sustainable plans for wetland management.2
    A regional implementation of WOFOST for calculating yield gaps of winter wheat across the European Union
    Boogaard, H. ; Wolf, J. ; Supit, I. ; Niemeyer, S. ; Ittersum, M.K. van - \ 2013
    Field Crops Research 143 (2013). - ISSN 0378-4290 - p. 130 - 142.
    tarwe - gewasproductie - akkerbouw - groeimodellen - klimaatverandering - wheat - crop production - arable farming - growth models - climatic change - crop growth simulation - fertilizer application - global radiation - models - land - opportunities - agriculture - tropics - system
    Wheat is Europe’s dominant crop in terms of land use in the European Union (EU25). Most of this wheat area is sown in autumn, i.e., winter wheat in all EU25 countries, apart from southern Italy, southern Spain and most of Portugal, where spring wheat varieties are sown in late autumn. We evaluated the strengths and limitations of a regional implementation of the crop growth model WOFOST implemented in the Crop Growth Monitoring System (CGMS) for calculating yield gaps of autumn-sown wheat across the EU25. Normally, CGMS is used to assess growing conditions and to calculate timely and quantitative yield forecasts for the main crops in Europe. Plausibility of growth simulations by CGMS in terms of leaf area, total biomass and harvest index were evaluated and simulated yields were compared with those from other global studies. This study shows that water-limited autumn-sown wheat yields, being the most relevant benchmark for the largely rain fed wheat cultivation in Europe, are plausible for most parts of the EU25 and can be used to calculate yield gaps with some precision. In parts of southern Europe unrealistic simulated harvest index, maximum leaf area index and biomass values were found which are mainly caused by wrong values of phenology related crop parameters. Furthermore CGMS slightly underestimates potential and water-limited yields, which calls for a calibration using new field experiments with recent cultivars. Estimated yield gap is between 2 and 4 t ha-1 in main parts of the EU25, is smaller north-western Europe and highest in Portugal.
    Spatio-temporal dynamics of the invasive plant species Elytrigia atherica on natural salt marshes
    Veeneklaas, R.M. ; Dijkema, K.S. ; Hecker, N. ; Bakker, J.P. - \ 2013
    Applied Vegetation Science 16 (2013)2. - ISSN 1402-2001 - p. 205 - 216.
    sea-level rise - long-term - vegetation changes - elymus-athericus - tidal marshes - wadden sea - deposition - gradient - impact - opportunities
    Question In the past decades, the tall native invasive grass, Elytrigia atherica, has been increasing in frequency and dominance on salt marshes along the Wadden Sea coast. Is this rapid expansion an outcome of natural succession or is it driven by anthropogenic eutrophication resulting from atmospheric deposition? Location Salt marshes on four back-barrier islands, Wadden Sea on the coast of the Netherlands and Germany. Methods We used a combination of time series of vegetation maps and chronosequence data of four naturally developed salt marshes to address our questions. These salt marshes have not been grazed by livestock or subject to other management regimes. By comparing development within and between four different salt marshes, we were able to study the spatial and temporal dynamics of the community dominated by E. atherica on natural salt marshes. Results The expansion rate of the E. atherica community was highest on young salt marshes (up to 30yr old) with vertical accretion rates of 0.35cm center dot yr1. The rate of expansion decreased on older marshes and the direction reversed, becoming negative, on the oldest marshes (around 90yr old), which have no vertical accretion and are under waterlogged conditions. Conclusions The expansion of E. atherica on natural, back-barrier islands along the Wadden Sea coast is more influenced by the age of the salt marsh and patterns in vertical accretion of soil than by uniformly spread atmospheric deposition.
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