Short description of MACSUR: MACSUR is a knowledge hub within FACCE-JPI (Joint Programming Initiative for Agriculture, Climate Change, and Food Security). TheFACCE-JPI Scientific Research Agenda defines five core research themes to address the impacts of climate change on European agriculture. MACSUR gathers the excellence of existing research in livestock, crop, and trade science to describe how climate variability and change will affect regional farming systems and food production in Europe in the near and the far future and the associated risks and opportunities for European food security. A knowledge hub is an innovative, tailor-made instrument developed by FACCE-JPI, associating 3 complementary dimensions: networking, research and capacity building.
The knowledge hub consists of 73 partners from 17 countries all over Europe and Israel. The work in MACSUR is organized in three themes on crop, livestock and trade modelling.. NRD is involved in the Crop Modelling (CropM) theme and is leader of the Italian partnership.

Short Description of CropM theme: Various modelling tools are used to support the decision making and planning in agriculture. An important component in this is crop modelling. Yet, recent reviews revealed that neither crop modelling approaches nor the simulation tools are fully up to the task. Another issue is that, while most of the crop growth simulation models have been developed and evaluated at field scale, they are usually applied in large area assessments without applying proper scaling methods. These and other deficiencies lead to uncertainties, which are often not quantified. CropM has the ambition to improve the situation by quantifying the uncertainty in their results and reduce the various model uncertainties through model intercomparison, compiling data as required to fill knowledge gaps, eliminating model deficiencies and improve methods for scaling and uncertainty analysis. The key challenges of CropM is to advance crop modelling for improved assessment of climate change impacts on food security. Importantly, the work strategy includes both to stimulate excellent science and to support capacity and network building including demonstration of improved impact assessments with links to and in consultation with decision makers

Short Description of LiveM theme: There is limited data concerning the adaptation of livestock production systems in Europe to climate change. This means that estimates of baseline impacts are few and therefore analyses of the advantages and disadvantages of particular adaptation strategies difficult to assess. Among the major challenges for the Livestock Sub-Theme are: (i) Identify, evaluate and increase the accessibility of relevant datasets for grasslands, livestock production and climate change; (ii) Compare models at a variety of spatial scales and assess model robustness and uncertainty in their estimates; and (iii) Integrate models across scales with a central focus on adaptation.

Short Description of TradeM theme: TradeM aims at promoting the enhancement and deployment of economic models, a better integration of crop- and livestock production into them and more insights into adaptation and mitigation measures and strategies .A main challenge to TradeM is finding appropriate methods of generalization (scaling) of outputs of models at different levels, starting at farm level and up until European and global scales. Such upscaling will enable appropriate integration of different models that exist.

Title and acronym: : MACSUR - Modelling European Agriculture with Climate Change for Food Security

Dates: from June 2012 to December 2015

Location: Europe

Source of Funding: Ministero delle Politiche Agricole Alimentari e Forestali, Roma, Italy in the context of the FACCE (Food, Agriculture and Climate Change) Joint Programme Initiative

Role of NRD: Leader of the Italian partnership in CROP M

NRD Scientific responsible: Prof. P.P. Roggero

NRD members and staff involved: Prof. L. Gutierrez, Dott. L. Ledda, Dott.ssa G. Seddaiu, Dott. L. Doro, Dott. P. Deligios, Dott.ssa L. Mula, Dott.ssa I. Iocola

Keywords: Climate Change adaptation, Agronomy, Modellistic approaches, Participatory Approaches, Carbon and Nitrogen cycles in agro-ecosystems, Desertification and soil erosion in arid environments, Agro-ecosystems management, Cropping systems

project website