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RESEARCH TOPICS

The Ph.D. program Agricultural, Environmental and Food Science and Technology aims to train specialists in accordance with the following ten research topics:

1. Agronomy, Herbaceous Crops, Flowers and Vegetables Systems, Agricultural Genetics and Agricultural Chemistry (Chairperson: Prof. Giovanni DINELLI)

Management of field crops, horticulture, agricultural genetics, agricultural chemistry and agri-environmental systems with the main purpose of ensuring a specialist qualification for researchers who intend to work in companies in the agricultural sector or in public or private research bodies.

2. International Cooperation and Sustainable Development Policies (Chairperson: Prof. Matteo VITTUARI)

Sustainability of agro-food systems and management of rural areas with particular attention on international cooperation interventions. Research topics are addressed thought the analysis of the economic, social and political dynamics.

3. Microbial Ecology and Plant Pathology (Chairperson: Prof. Claudio RATTI)

Biological, ecological, physiological, phenotypic, genetic and biochemical approaches to characterize probiotic microorganisms (of plants, animals and humans), prebiotic substances and plant pathogens (including measures of control) within a sustainable agriculture.

4. Agricultural and Food Economics and Policy (Chairperson: Prof. Maurizio CANAVARI)

Economic and policy studies related to production of agricultural raw materials (food and non-food), industrial processing, distribution and consumption of food, management of rural areas and environmental resources.

5. Agricultural Entomology (Chairperson: Giovanni BURGIO)

Integrated pest management (IPM); impact of exotic insect pests; biological control (including importation, augmentation, conservation and new associations); habitat and landscape management to enhance functional biodiversity; apidology; use of pollinators as bioindicators; insect eco-toxicology; biology, ecology and rearing of economic insect species; biology and control of arthropods of stored products.

6. Agricultural Engineering (Chairperson: Prof. Daniele TORREGGIANI)

Engineering approaches applied to agriculture and rural systems, aimed at the development of sustainable and smart solutions for farming, food processing, landscape and environmental planning, protection and management. Agricultural and biosystems engineering focuses on analysis, modelling, design, monitoring and planning applied to: i) agricultural water management, irrigation and drainage systems, wastewater reuse, watershed protection; ii) agricultural tractors and implements, soil/fruit-machine interaction, pesticide distribution, food products and processes, worker safety in agri-food industries; iii) farm, livestock and food-processing building design, monitoring and environmental control, rural landscape and green systems.

7. Food Science and Biotechnology (Chairperson: Prof. Santina ROMANI)

Research topics are addressed to all areas included in the agri–food chain with particular reference to food processing, qualitative, technological and functional characterization of ingredients, microbial cultures, foods and beverages, control and improvement of food safety, quality and shelf-life, by using traditional and innovative instrumental and sensory analytical and processing (bio)technologies. Moreover, driven by the global changes of the modern society, topics are focused also on food and food technologies sustainability, bio-economy, (bio)technological recovery and valorization of agri-food wastes and by-products.

8. Animal Science (Chairperson: Prof. Paolo BOSI)

Breeding and genetics, genomics, feeding and nutrition, farming and processing technologies, systems and practices applied in all main animal value chains for efficient, high-quality, safe and sustainable production of food of animal origin.

9. Tree Production Systems, Fruit, Forest and Ornamental Trees and Grape (Chairperson: Prof. Francesco SPINELLI)

Production systems, forest and ornamental trees with particular reference to genetics, physiology and cultivation of fruit, woody, ornamental tree species and grape.

10. Water-Food-Energy-Sustainable Agriculture Nexus (Chairperson: Prof. Attilio TOSCANO)

Research on the nexus between natural resources (water and soil), energy consumption and production (bioenergy), and food/farming/livestock systems to make agriculture more sustainable, in the context of circular economy.