The value of information for the management of water resources in agriculture

The value of information for the management of water resources in agriculture

Partners from the University of Bologna, with researchers from the CREA[1], among which we highlight the leader of the CONSOLE project, Davide Viaggi; recently published a journal article for maximum interest for the management of agricultural areas. The scientific article is entitled “The value of information for the management of water resources in agriculture: Assessing the economic viability of new methods to schedule irrigation“; and was published by the magazine “Agricultural Water Management” (Vol 227, 20 January 2020).

View of the journal article from the website of the magazine "Agricultural Water Management"

View of the journal article from the website of the magazine “Agricultural Water Management”

This research develops a methodology to assess the comparative advantages of new methods for planning irrigation with respect to specific irrigation practices. The methodology consists of a comparative cost-benefit analysis based on the information value approach that allows analysing whether an improvement in the information available to farmers generates economic benefits.

The results reveal that the introduction of the alternative method improves the performance of irrigation practices in Mediterranean regions that are characterized by high climatic variability and for those crops for which the consequences of not complying with the predictions are relatively low (i.e., tomato instead of corn, drip irrigation crops instead of sprinkler irrigation crops).

Under favourable conditions, the use of alternative technology generates a 0–20% increase in gross margin and a 10–30% saving in water compared to irrigation practices. The study concludes by addressing the conditions that justify the use of advanced information systems to program irrigation controls and detect some policy recommendations to boost their adoption.

In order to obtain the research, it can visit their scientific journal “Agricultural Water Management” webpage or apply through ResearchGate platform.

[1] Council for Agricultural Research and Economics

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