Course presentation and educational aims
Study and research activities in the following disciplines and with main reference to the topics listed in the following, that are developed if necessary by multi-disciplinary approaches. AGRICULTURAL ECONOMICS AND APPRAISAL – Common agricultural policy regarding both territory management models and agri-food chains. Supply, valorisation, quality and traceability of agri-food products and by-products. Relations between the management of the firm and the agri-food supply chains and the other economic, social and environmental sub-systems, also in relation to production and consumption trends (agro-ecology, fair trade, alternative agri-food networks, ecc.). Market and consumption analysis of agri-food products and analysis of agri-food firms’ marketing strategies. Land evaluation and environmental assessment. Management of urban greenery, landscape, rural territory, forest environment and ecosystem services. AGRONOMY AND FIELD, VEGETABLE, ORNAMENTAL CROPPING – Use efficiency of environmental resources (water, light, nutrients) in field and horticultural crop systems. Carbon sequestration and emission of greenhouse gases in agricultural systems. Efficiency of symbiotic and associative relationships between soil microorganisms and crops. Ecophysiology of crops. Management techniques of field and horticultural crop systems at different levels of intensification in the Mediterranean environment. Soil pollution: effects on the functionality of crop systems and decontamination techniques. Valorization of autochthonous plant resources. Efficiency of forage systems and their components. Quality of the production of field and horticultural crop species. Energy crops. Seed production. Agronomic, genetic and technological innovation in response to climate change. Landscape management. ARBORICULTURE AND FOREST SYSTEMS – Energy balance, resilience and ecological footprint of fruit tree systems. Eco-physiology of woody plants and precision fruit growing. Agro-industrial and nutraceutical enhancement of products of fruit and forest species and cultivars. Optimization of the use of environmental and energy resources of tree and forest systems. Product innovation, technology and ripening and post-harvest physiology of fruit. Landscape management. Conservation and management of historic gardens. AGRICULTURAL, FOREST AND BIOSYTEMS ENGINEERING – Water conservation. Soil water erosion. Water resources planning and management. Irrigation and drainage. Hydrology of small watersheds. Soil hydrology. Use of non-conventional water resources for irrigation. Watershed protection. Machinery and mechanization in agricultural and forest systems. Technologies in the transformation of agri-food and forest products. Rural land management also in a context of climate change. PLANT PATHOLOGY AND ENTOMOLOGY – Ecology, physiology and biochemistry of plant pathogens, phytophagous insects and their natural antagonists in agricultural and forestry systems. Development and application of biological and integrated pest control practices also aimed at improving functional biodiversity in agro-forestry systems. Environmental sustainability of the production and transformation of agro-food products. AGRICULTURAL CHEMISTRY, AGRICULTURAL GENETICS AND PEDOLOGY – Chemical, chemical-physical and biochemical indicators for monitoring soil degradation. Innovative techniques for soil quality protection. FOOD SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY – Food transformation and preservation processes. Evaluation and characterization of raw materials, unitary processing operations, stabilization and conditioning of food, development of new processes/products, use of by-products. Quality control, availability and sustainability of food production. AGRICULTURAL MICROBIOLOGY – Biological and molecular processes involved in the transformation, conservation and quality of agro-food products. Use and enhancement of by-products. ANIMAL SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY – Livestock farming technologies to manage environmental sustainability, animal welfare and animal food safety. Enhancement of autochthonous livestock breeds and their typical products. Development and management of forage systems for livestock to limit production seasonality, and improve the efficiency of nutrients utilization by animals and the quality of their products. Use of innovative feeds and agro-industrial by-products in livestock feeding, evaluating the effects of their bioactive compounds on animals, products and environment.