FAO.org

Home > Global Soil Partnership > Intergovernmental Technical Panel > ITPS Experts July 2015
Global Soil Partnership

Experts of the Intergovernmental Technical Panel on Soils

The  III Plenary Assembly endorsed a new list of 27 experts and approved the establishment of the second Intergovernmental Technical Panel on Soils on that basis. It asked the Secretariat to support and facilitate the activities of the ITPS as may be requested by the Assembly, including the organization of its first meeting, and assisting with its internal organization.

Africa

Dr. Nsalambi V. Nkongolo - Democratic Republic of Congo

Nsalambi V. Nkongolo is a Professor of Geographic Information Systems (GIS) and Environmental Sciences at Lincoln University of Missouri, USA and an Associate Professor of Soil Science, GIS and Geo-hydrogeology at the Institut Facultaire des Sciences Agronomiques (IFA) de Yangambi in the Democratic Republic of Congo (Since 2012). He has accumulated over 20 years of teaching and research experience in agricultural sciences.

He holds a PhD degree in Soil Science from Laval University in Canada (1997) and a PhD degree in Environmental Geography from the Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University in South Africa (2011). He studied forest soils as a Charles Bullard Fellow at Harvard Forest, Harvard University (USA); Soil and Greenhouse Gases as a JSPS postdoctoral fellow at Hokkaido University (Japan) and volcanic ash soil as an STA postdoctoral fellow at the National Agriculture Research Center in Tsukuba Science City (Japan). He served shortly as a lead author for Chap 22-Africa for Working Group II of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) and is currently the General Secretary of the IGBP committee for the Democratic Republic of Congo.

His current research focuses on soil and crop management practices and greenhouse gases emissions from soil in agricultural fields, pasture and forests.

Contact Nsalambi V. Nkongolo


Dr. Bhanooduth Lalljee - Mauritius

Professor Bhanooduth Lalljee is a soil scientist specialized in soil chemistry and soil microbiology. He is the present head of Department at the University of Mauritius. He was Director of the Consultancy and Contract Research Centre (CCRC) (2009-2013). He has been involved in the preparations of the national report for the UN Conference on Sustainable Development.

He was the National representative for Mauritius of the International  of Planet Earth and responsible for a nation-wide geo-awareness campaign. He has been consultant for UNDP, FAO, UNESCO, SADC, Government and  private organisation Through his public lectures, he is an active promoter of outreach for the geosciences, in particular concerning climate change, land-use and food security.

Contact Bhanooduth Lalljee


Dr. Isaurinda Dos Santos Baptista Costa - Cape Verde

Isaurinda Baptista Costa is an Agronomist specialized in soil fertility management and, currently, a senior researcher in sustainable land management at the National Institute of Agriculture Research and Development (INIDA) in Cape Verde, where she has been working for 24 years. For the last seven years, until 2011, she was INIDA’s scientific director, coordinating research in three operating departments.

Since 2010, she has been conducting research on: “Innovative land management technologies to improve rainwater-use efficiency in Cape Verde”.  She attended several international and regional projects, both as researcher and project coordinator. From 2007 to 2012, she coordinated the European funded project “DESIRE – Desertification Mitigation and Remediation of Land - a Global Approach for Local Solutions”. Parallel to her research, she has done consultancy on Climate change mitigation for UNDP, and on watershed management and development projects, dealing with crop and soils related issues.

She holds a bachelors’ degree in agronomy from Colorado State University (US) and a Masters also in agronomy/soil science from the University of Georgia (US). She is currently a PhD candidate in Environmental Science at Wageningen University in the Netherlands. 

Contact Isaurinda Costa


Dr. Botle Mapeshoane - Lesotho

Botle Mapeshoane is a soil scientist in the area of Hydropedology.  She has more than 10 years teaching experience at tertiary level. She is currently a lecturer in the Department of Soil Science and Resource Conservation at the National University of Lesotho.  She has been engaged as the natural resource management specialist and offer undergraduate courses such as Agroforestry, Environmental Awareness, Soil and Water conservation, Watershed Management and Soil and environmental management. She also gives post graduate courses in Soil classification and Soil and Water Pollution. She also taught high school Agricultural teacher trainees at sub-degrees and contributed in developing and disseminating localised agriculture curriculum for Lesotho secondary and high schools and co authored Agricultural text books for the localized curriculum.

She undertook action research through collaborations with both international organization and Government of Lesotho to mention a few studies, FAO and Ministry of Agriculture and Food Security in Lesotho on Conservation Agriculture (CA). She took part in the introduction of CA in Lesotho through her consultative baseline work and further working on soil cover management in CA.  She also worked with the Ministry of Water Lesotho to ensure and maintain high-quality database on wetlands by involving graduate research.

Contact Botle Mapeshoane - (second email adress)


Dr. Martin Yemefack - Cameroon

Martin Yemefack has a background in Soil science and land evaluation. His career in scientific research for development has led him to specialize in the use of remote sensing and spatial modelling tools for land, land use and environmental resources evaluation, especially within the small-scale farming environment in the tropics where climate-dependent shifting cultivation is the main practice. He has more than 25 years of on farm research and consultancy experience (at national and international levels) in these areas.

He has served as Associate Research Professor in the Institute of Agricultural Research and Development (IRAD) and the UMMISCO unit of the University of Yaounde 1 as well as Head of the Unit coordinating national Research Activities at the Ministry of Scientific Research and Innovation (MINRESI), Yaounde (Cameroon). He now also works as Visiting Scientist with the International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA) in Cameroon.

His research interest focuses on carbon dynamic and sequestration within the shifting agro-systems in the forest zone of Cameroon as well as the impact of climate changes on agricultural productivity in Sub-Saharan Africa. Another growing interest is on the current development on digital soil mapping applicable for soil properties in Cameroon. He is the President of Africa Soil Science Society (ASSS), and the General Secretary of Cameroon Soil Science Society (CASSS).

Contact Martin Yemefack

 

 

Asia

Dr. Brajendra - India

Dr Brajendra is a trained soil fertility/chemistry/microbiology scientist by profession. He joined ARS and is currently working as Senior Scientist, soil science, at the Indian Institute of Rice Research, Hyderabad, India, and have more than 15 years of  experience in research, developing soil technologies, soil extension and popularizing the sciences among the masses and making it accessible to the common people. 

He extensively worked on soil quality, information systems, nutrient dynamics and GIS based mapping of the remotest hill tops of the Eastern Himalayas to the vast stretch of Indo-Gangetic Plains of India, covering the entire Chotanagpur  plateau of Jharkhand and the Southern Indian peninsular masses. Fond of developing technologies for transforming the lives of the small and marginal farmers, he has a distinction of championing several technologies such as rapid soil health testing kit for acid  and saline, saline-sodic  soils, online e -soil health card generation system, a DSS for economizing fertilizer doses based on soil tests, utilizing GIS and Remote Sensing techniques. Presently member of several societies and editorial boards, he has been among the organizers of key agri events in India.

Contact Dr. Brajendra


Dr. Sopon Chomchan – Thailand

Sopon Chomchan currently serves the Land Development Department of the government of Thailand. He received his BS in Agriculture from Kasetsart university in Bangkok (Thailand, 1967) and MS in Land use planning rom McGill University in Montreal (Canada, 1963).

Since 1993 he worked for the Soil Survey and Classification division and Land use planning division for the Thai government but also as the Thai National Focal Point for United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD). He is a member of the National Land Committee and Land Development Committee. He has been Task Manager for the UNCCD SEA-SRAP Programme and Vice-Chairperson for the Committee on Science and Technology for UNCCD. His key technical aras include Land Use Policy, Land Use Planning and Land Degradation. 

Contact Sopom Chomchan


Dr. Kazuyuki Yagi – Japan

Kazuyuki Yagi is head of the Greenhouse Gas Team, the Department of Global Resources at the National Institute for Agro-Environmental Sciences (NIAES), Tsukuba, Ibaraki in Japan and a member of several Japanese and American scientific societies.

He holds a Master and a Ph. D. from Nagoya University in Biogeochemistry (1986) and in Soil Science (1996) respectively. His areas of expertise are agricultural sources of trace gases particularly in Asian agroecosystems, material cycling in agricultural ecosystems, isotopic measurements, as well as biogeochemistry and global environmental change. His current research activities involve emissions of trace gases in association with different land uses and agricultural management aiming at quantifying and modeling the processes of these gas emissions and developing their mitigation technologies.

Since 2008 he has been serving as a professor at Department of Biological and Environmental Engineering, Graduate School of Agricultural and Life Sciences at the University of Tokyo.

Contact Kazuyuki Yagi


Dr. Amanullah - Pakistan

Dr. Amanullah, is currently working as associate professor in the Department of Agronomy, Faculty of Crop Production Sciences, The University of Agriculture, Peshawar-Pakistan. He did his PhD in Agronomy (Crop Nutrition & Crop Physiology) in 2004 from UAP-Pakistan, and his Post Doctorate (Dryland Agriculture) from WTAMU, Texas-USA in 2010. Dr. Amanullah has published more than 100 publications including more than 50 publications in impact factor journals. He is also the author of two books.

Dr. Amanullah field of interests include: Crop Nutrition, Crop Physiology, Crop Production, Crop Competition, and Dryland Agriculture. Due to his out standing research publications, The Pakistan Council for Science and Technology (PCST), Islamabad award him with two consecutive research productivity awards in 2011-12 & 2012-13.

Contact Amanullah


Prof. Dr. Gan Lin Zhang – China

Prof. Gan-Lin Zhang obtained his Ph.D on Soil Science in 1993 from the Chinese Academy of Sciences and since then has been an employee at the Institute of Soil Science, Chinese Academy of Sciences.

His research areas cover soil genesis, classification, digital soil mapping and soil information system, as well as urban soils. He has published more than 150 scientific papers in peer-reviewed journals and more than ten books/book chapters. He is on the editorial board of many well-known soil science and geography journals. He is one of the leaders in soil resource science in China. He also serves in many governmental department and professional expert panels regarding soil resource, earth surface processes and environmental protection in China and abroad.

He has been actively involved in international scientific cooperations and communications. He is currently involved in the GlobalSoilMap.net project and is the leader of its East Asia Node.

Contact Gan Lin Zhang

Europe

Dr. Gunay Erpul - Turkey

Gunay  Erpul holds a  Bachelor  degree  in  Agricultural  Engineering  from  Ankara  University,  Turkey (1986). In 1987 he joined the Soil Science Department of Ankara University as a Teaching  and  Research  Assistant.  He  was  awarded  a  scholarship  to  attend  the  Complementary  Studies in  Eremology,  Ghent  University ,  Belgium,  where  he  received  a  2nd Master  degree  in  Desertification in 1996. Later, he continued at Purdue University,  West  Lafayette,  Indiana  for his Ph.D.  and  fulfilled  Ph.D. research under the collaboration between United States Department of Agriculture National Soil  Erosion  Research  Laboratory  and  International  Center  for  Eremology  (ICE)  of  Ghent  University  – Belgium , in 2001.

He  served  as  an  associate  member  in  the  field  of  Soil  Physics  of International  Centre  for  Theoretical   Physics (ICTP), Trieste, Italy from 2007 to 2012. He  has been member of  Multidisciplinary  Expert  Panel  (MEP),  Intergovernmental  Platform on Biodiversity and  Ecosystem Services (IPBES)  since  2013,  highly  involved  in  the  deliverables  of  thematic,  regional  and  global  assessments of Land Degradation and Restoration. He is currently faculty member  of Ankara University, Turkey since 2003, teaching and researching on  the  areas  of  soil  and  water  conservation,  land  evaluation  and  land  use  planning,  desertification (land  degradation and restoration), erosional processes and modelling. One of his achievements includes the specific research and scientific papers on the wind-driven rain erosion processes and modelling.

Contact Gunay Erpul


Dr. Rainer Horn - Germany

Rainer Horn is currently a Professor for Soil Science (Chair) at Institute of Plant Nutrition and Soil Science, Christian Albrechts University zu Kiel, Germany. He works in the broad area of Soil Physics: soil mechanics: stress strain effects in structured soils, soil structure effects, chemical as well as hydraulic processes in structured soils, unsaturated 3 dimensional flow and transport processes, waste deposit management capping systems, soil tillage effects on soil properties, soil hydraulic properties, chemical and biological aspects of soil aggregates. He has published more than 200 papers in reviewed journals, 58 bookchapters, and 12 books apart from more than 70 unreviewed papers and reports.

Rainer Horn was the president of international soil & tillage research organization (ISTRO), and president of Germany Soil Science Society, and is now president-elect of the International Union of Soil Science (IUSS)

Contact Rainer Horn


Dr. Peter de Ruiter - The Netherlands 

Peter de Ruiter conducts research on the composition and ecological stability of soil ecosystems, and the relationship between soil life, soil processes and environmental quality. Soils offer interesting research material as they contain a wealth of biological species such as bacteria, fungi, insects and worms. These species are responsible for the degradation of organic materials in soil, which form a key component of our global energy, carbon and nutrient cycles. De Ruiter's research focuses on the occurrence of tipping points and the related 'catastrophic' transitions in soil quality and vegetation during soil degradation and desertification processes. The prevention of such transitions can be crucial in ensuring the continued availability of food supplies in semi-arid areas at a heightened risk of desertification.

He has been a professor at Wageningen University since 2008. Previously, he was a scientific manager at the Wageningen University Soil Sciences Centre and professor at Utrecht University. De Ruiter has published in leading scientific journals such as Science and Nature, and is the co-author of the books Energetic Food Webs (2012, Oxford University Press) and Dynamic Food Webs (2005, Academic Press). De Ruiter has served on various boards and advisory bodies, including as chairman of the academic advisory council of the UvA's Institute for Biodiversity and Ecosystem Dynamics (IBED).

Contact Peter de Ruiter


Dr. Pavel Krasilnikov - Russia

Since 2011, Dr Pavel Krasilnikov is heading the Land Resources Department, Eurasian Center of Food Security of Lomonosov, Moscow State University, Russia. He also currently heads the Soil Ecology & Soil Geography Laboratory, Institute of Biology, Karelian Research Centre of Russian Academy of Sciences, Russia. His major areas of specialization are: soil science, soil geography, soil classification, soil mineralogy and micromorphology. Prior to his present position, he served as professor at the Laboratory of Edafology, National Autonomous University of Mexico.

He graduated from Moscow State University in 1992 with a degree in Soils Science and Agrochemistry and  obtained his PhD in 1996. He was also awarded with the Doctor of Biological Science degree in 2009.

He carried out several research projects mainly focused on Soil and Food Security, Soil Geography and Soil geomorphology, Soil Databases and Soil Information. He is a member of the Central Committee of the Docuchaev’s (Russian) Soil Science Society and member of the Editorial Board of the journals Boletín de la Sociedad Geológica Mexicana, Eurasian Soil Science and Geoderma.

Contact Pavel Krasilnikov


Dr. Luca Montanarella - Italy

Dr. Luca Montanarella graduated in Agricultural Engineering at the University of Perugia, Italy in 1984. He did post-doctoral studies related to generic and inorganic chemistry, (micro)biology and organic chemistry, healthcare and pharmaceuticals and medical devices at the University of Leiden, the Netherlands in 1985 and at Groningen University, the Netherlands in 1986.

From 1986 to 1991, he served as Mass Spectrometry and Chromatography Specialist at Varian Associates, Palo Alto, USA; and from 1991 to 1992 he was the principal administrator at the Italian Ministry of Agriculture. Since 1992, he has been working as scientific officer at the Commission of the European Communities, Joint Research Centre (JRC). From 2001 to 2003 he headed the European Soil Bureau project, Institute for Environment and Sustainability, Soil and Waste unit, JRC.

Since 2003 he is the head of the new JRC action “Soil Data and Information Systems” (SOIL). Dr. Montanarella has more than 200 publications, books and reports, and has received numerous awards and memberships.

Contact Luca Montanarella

Latin America and Caribbean

Dr. Juan Antonio Comerma - Venezuela

Juan Antonio Comerma studied Agronomy in Venezuela and obtained his MSc and PhD in North Carolina in the late 60.  He worked for over 30 years in Soils at the National Center of Agronomic Research in Maracay, Venezuela. His main interest were related to Soil Survey and Classification of tropical soils, but as National Coordinator of Soil Research he had to deal with soil fertility, management and laboratories. During his last years at the Center, he concentrated in Land Evaluation and developed a system adapted to tropical conditions, and applied, in extensive areas and farming systems, the FAO framework.

He participated in most International Committees of Soil Taxonomy, served as Coordinator for the one on Vertisols, and made several proposals for the improvement of the Committees on Tropical conditions. He has published extensively having over 100 publications presented at national and international events

After pensioning, he worked as a consultant for FAO coordinating a project in Cuba, related to the improvement of sugarcane plantations. He helped in the preparation of the Atlas of Latin America and the Caribbean, as well as coordinating a report of the Status of Soil Conditions, mostly soil degradation in that region.

Contact Juan Antonio Comerma


Ms. Oneyda Hernandez Lara - Cuba

Oneyda Hernandez Lara is a researcher working at the Soil Institute in Cuba for more than 35 years in themes related to conservation and amelioration of soils. Presently, she is coordinating Result 1 of the international research project: Environmental basis for local food sustainability, (BASAL for Spanish) and leading several national projects concerning the National Program for the Preservation and Amelioration of Cuban soils and fortifying of it through participation along with GEF, OP15 and LADA projects.

She is a member of several scientific societies such as Sociedad Cubana de la Ciencia del Suelo (SCCS), Asociación Cubana de Técnicos Agrícolas y Forestales (ACTAF), Comisión de Cambio Climático y medio ambiente del MINAG and RED Iberoamericana (CYTED). She has been a professor in post-graduate courses in Cuba and abroad for more than 20 years and gave course in Guatemala and México.

Contact Oneyda Hernanda Lara  (second email address)


 Dr. Fernando Garcia Préchac - Uruguay

Garcia Préchac is a professor at the University of Agronomy of Montevideo in Uruguay. His main Research lines are Soil Conservation, emphasizing on model validation for soil erosion loss prediction, and Soil Management: Conservation Tillage and No-till in crop-pasture rotations, and in the substitution of planted forest for natural pastures, emphasizing work in long-term experiments.

He is responsible for the Fagro-UDELAR in the Inter-institutional Program of Soil Conservation, with the Ministry of Animal Production and Agriculture (MGAP) and the National Institute of Agricultural Research (INIA) and receive the Institutional Morosoli Prize in 2014.

He is the author or coauthor of more than 100 technical and scientific publications, including 29 articles in peer reviewed media; 9 synthesis works (books), 8 book chapters, and  5 versions of a computer program to estimate erosion with the USLE/RUSLE model in Uruguay and the southern part of the La Plata Basin and principal Responsible of 10 Research Projects and co-responsible of 7. He was an invited speaker on 2 congresses in USA (2002 y 2003), and 3 in Argentina (2004, 2007 and 2012). He was also president (2004-2006) of the Uruguayan Society of Soil Science and national representative in the World Association for Soil and Water Conservation.

Contact Fernando Garcia Préchac


Dr. Maria de Lourdes Mendonca Santos -Brazil

Dr. Maria de Lourdes Mendonca Santos graduated in Agronomy from the State University of Maranhao, Brazil (1986). She holds a Master in Agronomy (Soil Science) from the Federal Rural University of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil (1990) and a Master in Environmental Sciences (1995). She achieved her Doctorate of Science in Pedology and Geomatics, from the Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne, Switzerland (1999). She also holds a post-doctorate on Digital Soil Mapping, from the University of Sydney, Australia. She has been an Embrapa (Brazilian Agricultural Research Corporation) researcher since 1990, where she coordinated several research projects on soil, at national and international levels. In 2009 she has became the General Director of Embrapa Soils (The National Center of Soil Research), until the present-day.

Her research expertise in Soil Science is focused on the interface Soils and Geomatica, developing research in the areas of quantitative pedology, digital soil mapping of soil classes and properties (like soil Carbon), soil-landscape modelling, soil databases and soil mapping.

To date, besides her activities in soil research management, she is the leader of the Latin American Node of the Consortium GlobalSoilMapping.Net.

Contact Maria Santos


Dr. Miguel Taboada - Argentina

Miguel Angel Taboada is an Agronomy Engineer graduated from University of Buenos Aires in 1991 in Soil Science. He holds a Ph.D. in Agrosystem functioniong and Agrosystems from National Institute of Toulouse, France in 2006. His main areas  of specialization are soil physics, water and soil management and conservation, soil fertility, tillage systems and their relationships with soil, soil quality indicators, soil salinity, environmental quality and greenhouse gas emissions.

Since 2009, Taboada has been serving as the Director of Soils Institute, Natural Resources Research Centre, INTA, based in Buenos Aires, Argentina. He is professor at the University of Buenos Aires teaching Fertility and Fertilizers. He also worked as an independent researcher at the National Council of Technical and Scientific research, CONICET. He was elected coordinator of the Council in 2012.

Besides many scientific papers at national and international level, he has also recently published two books on soil fertility. 

Contact Miguel Taboada (second address)

Near East

Dr. Talal Darwish - Lebanon

Talal Darwish graduated from Moscow Friendship University in 1979 and holds a Ph D in Soil Science. In 2006 he was promoted to the position of Director of Research CNRS and appointed as Director of the Center for Remote Sensing CNRS until April 2014. Since 1994, he started teaching at the Lebanese University soil science, soil fertility and soil environmental problems. He worked as coordinator and main investigator of the project: production of the soil map of Lebanon at detailed scale 1:50,000 and associated database within the framework of the national project on the use of remote sensing and GIS in soil mapping(1997-2002). The project produced 27 Lebanese soil maps and explanatory book which were printed in 2005 and 2006 with funding from the CNRS. In parallel, Dr Darwish produced in 2000 the soil map and soil geographical database of Lebanon at 1:1 Million scale and in 2002 updated the national soil map of Lebanon at 1:200,000 scale.

He has been involved in several national and international specialized committees and projects, funded by CNRS Lebanon, bilateral Lebanon-France and Lebanon-Italy programs, Italian Cooperation, EU, FAO, UNDP, WB and GEF. At the same time, he collaborated with researchers from CNRS, the American University of Beirut, Lebanese University and Holy Spirit University of Kaslik under fertigation of field crops and greenhouse crops. The results of his research work resulted in the publication of 135 papers in referred journals, books and proceedings on soil mapping, soil salinity, plant nutrition, efficiency of fertilizer and water application, management of water resources in view of climate change, land capability, land degradation, desertification, soil erosion in relation to land geomorphology and vegetation cover.

Contact Talal Darwish


Prof. Dr Ahmad S. Muhaimeed - Iraq

Ahmad S Muhaimeed, received B.S degree in Soil Science from Baghdad University in 1974  and M.S in Soil Survey and Classification from the University of Nebraska –Lincoln (USA, 1978). He holds a Ph.D. in Soil Survey from Colorado State University (USA, 1981). He served as teacher of soil survey and land management in the following universities Salahaldeen, Mosul and Baghdad. He worked as Head of soil science and water resources and is currently Head of the fight against Desertification at the college of Agriculture at Baghdad University.

He has more than 35 years of experience in academics. He presented many papers in national and international conferences and published three books and more than 100 papers . He served as supervisor for more than 30 graduate students in the area of Soil Survey and land  management using GIS and Remote Sensing.

Contact Ahmad S. Muahimeed


Dr. Saéb AbdelHaleem Khresat - Jordan

Saéb Khresat has a Ph.D. degree in Land use and management from New Mexico state University in USA (1993). He is a Professor of soil science at Jordan University of Science & Technology (JUST) in Jordan since 1993. He has served as the Agriculture advisor at the Higher Council for Science and Technology from 2008 to 2010. Over the past twenty years, Professor Khresat held several administrative positions at JUST (Vice Dean of Research; Department Head of Natural resources and environment department, Agricultural experimental station acting director, Acting dean).

He has more than 30 years of experience in soil studies and  land use planning and have worked on many projects for international agencies such as FAO, IFAD, GEF, ICARDA and published over  50 journal articles, book chapters, on soil classification,  land degradation and management and land use changes related topics. His experience includes soil and land management for proper land use planning; enhancing natural resource conserving technologies or practices to farmers; investigate the impact of different sustainable land management practices on crop productivity, with a particular focus on soil conservation measures; and application of soil science to ecology, and human interactions with landscapes in dryland environments.

Contact Saéb AbdelHaleem Khresat

North America

Dr. Gary Pierzynski - USA

Gary Pierzynski is a university distinguished professor of soil and environmental chemistry and currently serves on the faculty and as head of the Department of Agronomy at Kansas State University. He received his BS and MS in Crop and Soil Sciences from Michigan State University and his PhD in soil chemistry from The Ohio State University.  His research areas include water quality as impacted by agricultural inputs, remediation of heavy-metal contaminated sites and soils, risk assessment, and the evaluation of food-chain transfer of soil contaminants in urban gardening scenarios. 

He is a Co-PI on the United States Agency for International Development Feed the Future Sustainable Intensification Innovation Lab at Kansas State University and is also currently funded through an EPA Brownfields Training, Research and Technical Assistance Grant and the Kansas Fertilizer Research Fund. He has published more than 80 refereed papers and three books, including the successful textbook Soils and Environmental Quality, served as the Editor for the Journal of Environmental Quality, served as President of the Soil Science Society of America, served as President of the International Society of Trace Element Biogeochemistry, is a Fellow of the American Society of Agronomy and the Soil Science Society of America, has received national awards for teaching and research, and has given more than 50 invited presentations around the world.  Service duties include membership on the Kansas Grain Sorghum Commission, Kansas Crop Improvement Association Board of Directors, Kansas Soybean Association, and the Crop Improvement Committee for the United Sorghum Checkoff Program Board.        

Contact Gary M. Pierzynsky


Prof. Dr. Daniel John Pennock - Canada

Daniel Pennock is a faculty member in the Department of Soil Science at the University of Saskatchewan and has broad experience in research and administration. He has published extensively in research areas including digital soil mapping, soil erosion assessment, effects of land use change on soil quality, precision nutrient management, hydropedology, and, most recently, on greenhouse gas emissions from managed and natural landscapes.

His research has emphasized the need to take a landscape-scale perspective on specific research questions. He worked previously with the FAO through the Joint FAO/IAEA Division of Nuclear Techniques in Food and Agriculture on the use of isotopes for developing management practices to reduce soil erosion and increase crop production.

He has held senior administrative posts at the University of Saskatchewan (most recently as Vice-Provost) and the Canadian Society of Soil Science (CSSS), and was named a fellow of the CSSS in 2010.

Contact Daniel Pennock

South West Pacific

Dr. Siosiua Halavatau - Tonga

Siosiua Halavatau is Deputy Director at the Land Resource Division of the Secretariat of the Pacific Community (SPC) (Suva, Fiji) and holds a PhD in Soil Fertility from the University of Queensland, Australia. His specialization area is in soil fertility and plant nutrition having contributed to the study on diagnosis and correction of nutrition disorders of root crops in the Pacific. Before joining SPC in 2003 he worked as the chief soil scientist for the Ministry of Agriculture in Tonga for almost 20 years. His research works for Tongan agriculture includes soil management, farming systems, and developing and operationalizing participatory technology development in Tonga. 

In SPC he led an EU project on Development of Sustainable Agriculture In the Pacific (DSAP) from 2003 to 2010 before becoming the Crop Production Advisor which he still holds together with the position of Deputy Director. He currently leads ACIAR research projects on Soil Health in the Pacific Islands.

Contact Siosiua Halavatau


Dr. Neil McKenzie - Australia

Neil McKenzie is an Australian soil scientist who joined CSIRO (Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation) in 1987. He has 30 years of research experience in the land and water sciences and was Chief of CSIRO Land and Water from 2007 to 2012. Prior to taking on this role, his research team focused on quantitative methods for mapping and assessing soil and land resources. 

His achievements include leading the team responsible for publication of the Australian soils and landscapes: an illustrated compendium (www.publish.csiro.au/pid/3821.htm), along with guidelines and other standards for land resource assessment relating to soil physical measurement, soil classification and database design. He has been involved in shaping public policy through his membership of scientific and technical committees. As Chief of CSIRO Land and Water, he contributed to a wide range of national and international forums on earth observation, environmental information, water resources, soil resources, sustainable agriculture, food security and climate change.

He now leads CSIRO’s involvement in the emerging global soil information system and he is currently the Executive Director of GlobalSoilMap.net Consortium.

Contack Neil McKenzie