We are looking for
Yield gap analysis for sustainable potato production’ (Potato Gap NL) is a project funded by NWO and Holland Innovative Potato, an initiative of 10 companies active in the potato value chain and prominent global players in the fields of potato breeding and processing. Increases in potato yields in the Netherlands have been relatively small compared to other crops. The yield gap, i.e. the difference between potential and actual yield, is significant, and yields vary largely across fields (even within one farm) and years. In this project, we aim to analyse potential and actual potato yields and yield gaps at field and farm level across the Netherlands. Insight will be integrated in a decision-support system (DSS) that can benchmark potato yields and provide insight in the causes of yield gaps at individual field level while accounting for farm specific conditions. Trade-offs with tuber quality, resource use efficiency and environmental impacts will be included. Three main steps will be followed: 1) improvement of potato growth models to assess yield and quality, 2) field and farm monitoring and analysis of actual yields, quality, resource use efficiency and environmental impacts (‘crop performance’), 3) development of a DSS. Two types of experiments are planned. The first are related to Step 1 and intend to calibrate and validate potato growth models to simulate potential, water- and nutrient-limited yields (in collaboration with Wageningen Research). The second are related to Step 2 and intend to analyse other agronomic variables influencing crop performance. All these experiments will be performed for two years, and in two locations. We seek a highly motivated research assistant to organize the experiments and assist in on-farm analyses. Eventually, the assistant may also be involved in teaching, focusing on knowledge of temperate crops and farming systems, their productivity and sustainability.
We are looking for a candidate with the following qualifications:
• BSc or MSc in plant sciences, agronomy, or ecology
• Experience in crop production and performing field experiments
• Solid knowledge of Dutch and European agriculture
• Good communication skills
• Experience with teaching and transfer of knowledge
In principle this is a 36 month position at 0.8 fte. We offer you a temporary contract for 12 months which will be extended with two years if you perform well. Gross salary per month within a range of minimum €2.465 and a maximum of €3.292 (scale 8) based on full time employment. In addition, we offer a holiday allowance of 8% and an end-of-the-year bonus of 8.3% of your annual salary.
Additional information about this project can be obtained from Dr Pytrik Reidsma (Pytrik.Reidsma@wur.nll). You can apply up and until August 31 2018 For this position you can only apply online: http://www.wageningenur.nl/career
&Who we are. The successful applicant will be based at the Plant Production Systems Group (PPS), with frequent travels to experimental locations. The candidate will work closely with two PhD students (on step 1, potato growth modelling, and step 2, field and farm monitoring and analysis), and a post-doc (on step 3, development of a DSS). In addition, there will be close collaboration with Wageningen Research. The mission of PPS is to integrate biological knowledge to analyse and design sustainable production systems for crops (including integration with livestock), focused on resource use efficiency and equitable management of natural resources. WU is internationally renowned for its research and education in the fields of life sciences, plant improvement and sustainability. Through these activities it aims to make essential contributions to the quality of life. .