ISPA Account

Plenary Session - Past, Present, and Future of Precision Agriculture and our Professional Society

On Tuesday, June 27th join us for our Plenary Session with Dr. Raj Khosla. 

Past, Present, and Future of Precision Agriculture and our Professional Society

The passage of law in 1983 to allow Global Positioning Systems (GPS) to be available for civil applications was a landmark event in the history of human kind. Later in early 2000 a further commitment was made by the US government to grant civilians access to un-degraded GPS signals on par with those used by the military. This was a game changer for everybody and particularly agriculture worldwide. It was pivotal to the progress we have made today in the field of precision agriculture which is rapidly defining the emerging discipline of Digital Agriculture. How did we get here? What role GPS played in enabling the shape of Precision Agriculture as we know today? What does future hold for us as Precision Agronomists / Scientists / Engineers / Data Analytics / Social aspects and more in the next ten years and beyond. What role does our professional Society - ISPA can play in furthering the science of precision agriculture globally? These questions and more will be presented in the Plenary Keynote followed by a panel discussion among the scientists and engineers from around the world.

Panel Discussion - The Aspirations of the ISPA

Following Dr. Khosla's presentation, please join us for The Aspirtations of the ISPA Panel Discussion.
Dr. Viacheslav Adamchuk

Viacheslav Adamchuck

McGill University 

Originally from Kyiv, Ukraine, Dr. Adamchuk obtained a mechanical engineering degree from the National Agricultural University of Ukraine (currently National University of Life and Environmental Sciences of Ukraine), located in his hometown. Later, he received both MS and PhD degrees in Agricultural and Biological Engineering from Purdue University (USA). In 2000, Dr. Adamchuk began his academic career as a faculty member in the Department of Biological Systems Engineering at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln (USA). Ten years later, he assumed his current position in the Department of Bioresource Engineering at McGill University (Canada), while retaining his adjunct status at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. Currently, he serves as the Chair of the Bioresource Engineering Department. In addition, he is Canada’s representative to the International Society of Precision Agriculture. Dr. Adamchuk leads a Precision Agriculture and Sensor Systems (PASS) research team that focuses on developing and deploying soil and plant sensing technologies to enhance the economic and environmental benefits of precision agriculture. His team has designed and evaluated a fleet of proximal sensor systems capable of measuring physical, chemical and biological attributes directly in a field. Most sensors produce geo-referenced data to quantify spatial soil/plant heterogeneity, which may be used to prescribe differentiated treatments according to local needs. Through studies on sensor fusion and data clustering, he investigated the challenges faced by early adopters of precision agriculture. Through his outreach activities, Dr. Adamchuk has taught multiple programs dedicated to a systems approach in adopting smart farming technologies around the world.
Dr. Yafit Cohen

Yafit Cohen

ARO, Israel 

Dr. Yafit Cohen is a senior research scientist at the Institute of Agricultural Engineering at ARO since 2003. She is an adjunct faculty at the Faculty of Agriculture, Hebrew University, and teaches GIS with focus on precision agriculture.
She possesses a B.A. in geography from Bar-Ilan University and a Ph.D. in remote sensing and GIS for crop recognition. She served as a post-doctoral fellow at the Technion, Haifa during 2002 and specialized in remote sensing for land-use recognition and mapping.
Her scientific main interests are remote-sensing for precision agriculture and spatio-temporal analysis of insect in agricultural environments like Medfly and Red-palm-weevil. She is leading long-term studies in thermal remote sensing and recently in fusing aerial and satellite remote sensing for water status variability mapping and for variable rate irrigation decision making.
She has published 65 articles in refereed journals and chapters in 6 books. The articles reflects her cooperation with PA research groups from USA, Europe, and Canada. During the past 20 years, she served as a member of a number of scientific committees, has served as a guest editor of a special issues in refereed journals, and serves today as a member of the editorial board of the journals Precision Agriculture. She is a member of ISPA since 2005. Currently, she is supervising 7 MA and 5 PhD students. Together with Prof. Victor Alchanatis she served as the chair of the ECPA in 2015 held in Israel.

Dr. Kwame Agyei Frimpong

Kwame Agyei Frimpong

Cape Coast University, Ghana, President of the AAPA

Dr. Kwame Agyei Frimpong is the Vice Dean for the School of Agriculture at the University of Cape Coast (UCC). He is also Chief Examiner for Integrated Soil Fertility management for the College of Distance Education, UCC and has taught several undergraduate and Postgraduate courses including Integrated Soil Fertility Management, Soil Ecology, Environmental Soil Chemistry and Land Evaluation. He is the Principal/ Co-Investigator of 4 Internationally funded collaborative research projects, Principal/ Co-Supervisior for 10 PhD students, 3 Masters degree students and 5 undergraduate students at UCC and Co-Supervisor for a PhD student on the WASCAL Project. Dr. Frimpong is also a member of the Board of the School of Postgraduate studies, the College of Agriculture and Natural Sciences' committee for Internally Generated Funds and the University of Cape Coast Board for Publication. 

Dr. Frimpong has made many accomplishments for his work in agriculture including the African Plant Nutrition Institute (APNI) Outreach Fellowship Award 2020 for Best evolving Researcher, the University of Cape Coast's award for 2nd Best Evolved Researcher for 2018, and AWARD Leadership Program for Agricultural Research and Development (LEPARD) in 2016. 

Dr. Frimpong's work as an Associate Professor provided professional experience in research, outreach and undergraduate and Postgraduate teaching and supervision in Soil Science, Land Use and Environmental Science, facilitating and leading collaborative research. He also has experience working with government, private sector and non-governmental organizations doing training and other engagements and has done Module writing and developed guidelines and training materials. 

He earned his PhD in Plant and Soil studies from University of Aberdeen in 2011. Dr. Frimpong also has his Masters of Science degree in Physical Land Resources from Ghent University in Belgium and his Bachelor's of Science degree in Agriculture from the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science & Technology.

Dr. Raj Khosla

Raj Khosla

Kansas State University

Prof. Raj Khosla is the Head of Agronomy Department at Kansas State University and is a globally recognized authority on Precision Agriculture. He has been engaged in precision agriculture since inception and has made significant contributions in the development and spread of Precision Agriculture worldwide. He is the Founder and Past-President of the International Society of Precision Agriculture. Most recently, he served as the member of National Academy of Science Executive Committee on Science Breakthrough 2030. In 2012, Dr. Khosla was named the Jefferson Science Fellow by the National Academy of Sciences and was appointed as the Senior Science Advisor on Food Security to the U.S. Department of State. In 2011, he was inducted by NASA to the US “Presidential Advisory Board on Positioning, Navigation and Timing” to work on the US space-based GPS policy.
Prof. Khosla’s research specializes in harnessing spatial and temporal heterogeneity in managed agro-ecosystems and translating those into better decision models. His group has extensively used remote sensing and other geo-spatial tools to enhance production, resource use efficiency, profitability, and sustainability of managed agro-ecosystems. He has co-authored over 100 publications (book chapters, refereed journal articles, and others) and has been invited globally to over 30 countries.
Prof. Khosla is the Fellow of American Society of Agronomy; Fellow of Soil Science Society of America; Fellow of Soil and Water Conservation Society and Honorary Life Fellow of International Society of Precision Agriculture.
Dr. Brenda Ortiz

Brenda Ortiz

Auburn University

Dr. Brenda Ortiz is Full Professor at Auburn University. She joined Auburn University in 2008 with an appointment of Extension (75%) and Research (25%). She has a PhD in Biological and Agricultural Engineering from The University of Georgia with an emphasis in Precision Agriculture and Crop Growth Simulation Modeling. Over the last 13 years, she has led several extension and research projects focused on precision agriculture with emphasis on irrigation, fertilization and planting; climate change and climate variability impacts on agriculture; identification of factors associated with aflatoxin contamination of corn, identification of site-specific management strategies to increase wheat and corn production in the Southeast USA. She had published 38 peer-review journal articles and she is a senior author on 23 of those. One of her papers focused on artificial intelligence applications to precision irrigation published 2020 received the ASABE Superior paper award. She led the development of the “Climate and Crops” iBook. This iBook is intended to support farmers and consultant adapting crop production to climate variability in the Southeast USA. The Extension iBook “Climate and Crops” published in 2017 received the ASABE Educational Aids Blue Ribbon award by the American Society of Biological and Agricultural Engineers. The same year the iBook was selected as an international finalist in two categories as Best Book of the Year during the 2017 iBooks Author Conference.

During her tenure at Auburn, Dr. Ortiz has graduated seven MSc students, one PhD student, has been a committee member of 10 MSc students, has hosted 10 visiting scholars from four different countries and supervised four post-doctoral researchers. As a principal investigator, she has been able to secure over three million dollars for research and 1 million for Extension programing.

She has been very active with professional societies and international work. In 2015, she was the leader of the Precision Agricultural Systems Community of the American Society of Agronomy (ASA) and in 2021, she was the leader of the ASA Extension and Education community. Because of her expertise in Precision Agriculture, she has been invited by several Universities in Europe and South America (Brazil in particular) to mentor their graduate students and to work on collaborative projects. Currently she is an Adjunct faculty at the Sao Paulo State University – Jabotical Campus in Brazil. Dr. Ortiz international work was recognized in 2017 with the Richard L. Guthrie Award for Achievement in International Agriculture. In 2020, the Alabama Farmers Federation recognized her work with the Rittenour Award for Excellence in Production Agriculture & Forestry Research.

From 2017 to 2021, Dr. Brenda Ortiz was leading a one million dollar NRCS-CIG funded project focused on the demonstration of best Irrigation practices to Alabama and Tennessee farmers.

From Fall 2019 to Winter 2020, Dr. Ortiz was a visiting scientist at the Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO). She was working with FAO Extension specialists on methodologies to strength the development and evaluation of extension programs.