SERDANG – Two world-leading universities in the agriculture fields namely Universiti Putra Malaysia (UPM) and Wageningen University, the Netherlands cooperated in the organization of the International Conference on Big Data Applications in Agriculture (ICBAA2017). The Institute of Plantation Studies (IKP), UPM led the organization of this conference which was held at the Auditorium Putra, Bangunan TNCPI on the 5 – 6 December 2017.
Yang Berhormat Datuk Seri Panglima Wilfred Madius Tangau, the Minister of Science, Technology and Innovations Malaysia officiated the conference and launched a book published by Springer International Publishing entitled “Crop Improvement: Sustainability through Leading-edge Technology” edited by two (2) professors from IKP during the Opening Ceremony of ICBAA 2017. The important and main findings from ICBAA 2017 will also be captured in a book for future reference with the support of Springer.With the theme ‘from nursery to field’, the conference aimed to provide exposure to researchers, industry players and students, detailing on knowledge-guided crop management which offers solutions to various inherent problems in agricultural production. ICBAA 2017 served as an international platform for researchers to share research findings, obtain the latest information and exchange ideas on the applications of big data in agriculture.
The conference discussed on data acquisition, management and mining using different softwares, modelling and bioinformatics tools. Deliberations focused on the applications of big data in precision crop improvement and management. In agriculture, big data offers farm and plantation managers access to explicit information and decision making capabilities not thought of before. The conference was very timely as global climate change in recent years has resulted in many environmental uncertainties and worsening threat of pests and diseases.
Big data in the form of ‘omics data, field monitoring data and remote sensing data enabled better precision in producing new cultivars, managing agricultural inputs, diagnosing stresses and predicting crop performance in the field. Big data is important in industry revolution 4.0 that will transform the agriculture sector through the applications of digital technology.
The chairperson of the conference Prof. Datin Dr. Siti Nor Akmar Abdullah stated that besides the participants from universities and research institutions, many of the participants were from the plantation industry related to oil palm and rubber. This reflects the close relation that has been established between IKP and the country’s plantation industry, additionally it shows in depth interest in the applications of big data for the advancement of research and the management of the plantations. The conference participants had the opportunity to listen to the presentation from experts from renowned university of the world and industry researchers at the conference.
The keynotes was presented by Dr. Sharifah Shahrul Rabiah Syed Alwee (FELDA Global Ventures R&D Sdn Bhd) and Assoc. Prof. Dr. Wataru Takeuchi (University of Tokyo, Japan). Among the plenary speakers include Dr. JH (Jack) Vossen (Wageningen University, the Netherlands) Mr. Mohd Zahlan Mohd Zaki (Sime Darby R&D Sdn Bhd), Mr. Jin Ngee (Integrated DNA Technologies Pte Ltd, Singapore), Assoc. Prof. Dr. Qazi Fariduddin (Aligarh Muslim University, India) and Assoc. Prof. Dr. Abdul Rashid Mohamed Shariff (Universiti Putra Malaysia). This conference provided a golden opportunity for the researchers from the universities to discuss potential collaborative industry-academia research
In his officiating speech, the minister stressed the importance for the scientists especially from the younger generation to enhance their competency and knowledge in digital technology and follow the rapid development in the field. This will make them valuable assets to the country to advance in this highly competitive digital era. Yang Berhormat Minister stated that big data has changed the way research is carried out because big data set gives a wider perspective in looking at products and processes.
This has produced research fields like bioinformatics, systems biology, precision farming, robotics and artificial intelligence that should be explored by the current scientists.
Date of Input: 06/02/2018 | Updated: 06/02/2018 | ainzubaidah
UNIVERSITI PUTRA MALAYSIA
43400 UPM SERDANG