Students showcase the future of agriculture

25 Sep 2020 | 4 mins (including 2 min video)

Top postgraduate students will present their latest research in agriculture and related areas at The University of Western Australia’s Institute of Agriculture Postgraduate Showcase next week. 

The showcase, which has been running for 14 years, will provide eight postgraduate students the opportunity to promote the impact of their research to their peers, the agricultural industry and public.

“Students may be excellent at research, but if they cannot sell the benefits of their findings to industry it’s going to be difficult for them to maximise the impact of their important findings."

Hackett Professor Kadambot Siddique

Director of The UWA Institute of Agriculture, Hackett Professor Kadambot Siddique, said the showcase was an important opportunity for UWA students to engage with farmers, scientists, academics and the wider agricultural community.

“Students may be excellent at research, but if they cannot sell the benefits of their findings to industry it’s going to be difficult for them to maximise the impact of their important findings,” Professor Siddique said.

PhD researcher Daniel Kidd said his research focused on finding plants that need less fertilisers to grow.

“We want to reduce the use of fertiliser in our cropping and pasture systems because overuse has a negative effect on our environment and waterways,” Mr Kidd said.

Agricultural scientist and PhD student Maria Purnamasari’s research analyses how plant defence mechanisms are compromised when plants are left under shade.

“Just like humans, plants that don’t get enough sun are more susceptible to disease and pathogens,” Ms Purnamasari said.

PhD student Omar Anwar, from UWA’s Department of Electronics and Computer Engineering, said his research combined technology and agriculture to develop low-cost, low-power and long-range remote beehive health monitoring solutions.

“The majority of people think honeybees just provide us with honey, but actually one third of what we eat depends on pollination those honeybees provide, yet we use century old methods when it comes to taking care of them,” Mr Anwar said.

“Using new technologies, we will be able to take better care of bees and enhance our future food supply.”

The Postgraduate Showcase will be held on Wednesday, 30 September from 1pm to 5pm at the Ross Lecture Theatre at UWA.

Register for the event online, or find more information on The UWA Institute of Agriculture website

Media references

Nicholas Smith, UWA Media Officer, 08 6488 1888 / 0411 644 492
Rosanna Candler, Communications Officer, UWA Institute of Agriculture, 08 6488 1650 / 0417 954 985

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