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Session S15 - Mathematics of Planet Earth

Tuesday, July 20, 18:00 ~ 18:25 UTC-3

Modeling Agricultural Decision Making: Physical and Social Approaches

Lea Jenkins

Clemson University, United States   -   This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

According to facts reported on the UN Water website, billions of people experience water scarcity every year. Over 1/3 of the world's groundwater systems are currently in distress, and hundreds of millions of people worldwide will be displaced due to water shortages in the coming decades.

In regions where agricultural water use is high, these effects can be more pronounced. In California, for instance, the effects of a several-year, severe drought are exacerbated by the heavy agriculture production throughout the state. Thus, water management decisions, and limited availability of water, have a drastic effect on the livelihood of local residents as well as the U.S. as a whole.

Our multidisciplinary research team has worked to develop a software environment for simulating the decision processes conducted by farmers in managing their water usage and associated crop portfolios. Previous simulation efforts have modeled farmers as a consortium, each planting from the same portfolio and each with the same objectives tied to profit and water usage. More recently, we have begun to use agent-based modeling to increase the fidelity in our models and allow distinct farmers to make decisions based on personal preferences. This talk will include information on the effects of this modeling environment on the overall decision-making process, especially in comparison with our earlier efforts to guide decision makers in agricultural regions.

Joint work with Kathleen Fowler (Clarkson University) and Kristen Goebel (Clarkson University).

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