This proceedings book presents a set of case studies illustrating the various agronomic tools that can be used for specific agronomic questions. The case studies are grouped in sections illustrating relevant subquestions in developing an agriculture with broadened objectives. The book starts with an introductory paper on the role of agronomy in research and education in Europe. The second section deals with agricultural land use, food security and environment. This is followed by a set of papers describing experimental research and modeling approaches used to design new ideotypes of crops, including physiological properties in relation to growth factors such as radiation, CO2, temperature and water.
Sustained soil fertility directly links to nutrient cycling and soil organic matter. A selected set of papers addresses the improvements in resource use efficiency and as such their contribution towards economic, environmental and agricultural objectives. The final section addresses the design of integrated and ecological arable farming systems. It highlights the role of prototyping interaction with leading-edge farmers, as promising tools to design, implement and test new farming systems.
It is hoped that the activities of the European Society for Agronomy and the Proceedings of its 4th Congress will stimulate to serve the new perspectives of agronomy, i.e. to adopt ecological principles, to optimally manage the use of resources and to meet social and economic objectives.