Introduction soildarity.png

Soil science is essential in different agricultural and environmental domains including precision agriculture, which is one way of ensuring sustainable soil management practices. The EU-funded SOILdarity project will develop a scientific solution that integrates soil ecology with cutting-edge soil and crop sensors, modelling and system control technologies for sustainable soil management. The project will focus on Portugal, where soil health faces considerable challenges due to management and climate changes, erosion and overexploitation patterns. Specifically, it will facilitate the cooperation between FCiências.ID – Associação para a Investigação e Desenvolvimento de Ciências (including the University of Lisbon’s Faculty of Science, a major research centre in soil sciences in Portugal), and two internationally leading research institutions: MIGAL- Galilee Research Institute (Israel) and UGENT University (Belgium).  The leading partner aims at boosting the research and innovation capacity of the Faculty of Science of the University of Lisbon and improving its know-how in precision agriculture and sustainable soil management through the knowledge-transfer dynamics established with the internationally leading research-intensive partners.

Project description

According to the UN Sustainable Development Forum estimations (2008), humans will have to produce in the next 50 years as much food as it has been produced over the past 10,000 years. To achieve this, while maintaining the planet a safe place for humanity, we need to manage farm resources site specifically using precision technologies. By developing SOILdarity, It is aimed at boosting FC.ID/CIÊNCIAS scientific and innovation capacity and improving its know-how in precision agriculture and sustainable soil management by learning with and taking advantage of the knowledge transfer from the other internationally leading research-intensive partners (e.g., MIGAL and UGent). The exercise will notably focus on how to integrate soil ecology with cutting-edge soil and crop sensors, modelling and system control technology for managing farm resources (water, fertiliser, crop varieties and rotations) site-specifically.

Considering that the agricultural industry encompasses preparing the soil for optimum returns and that it always seeks to improve production performances by adopting new technologies, FC.ID/CIÊNCIAS’s overarching goal is to become the pivot of the sustainable agriculture industry in Portugal and strengthen its position as a research institution at international level. This will be achieved through the deployment of the project scientific strategy including – among other features – a series of activities specifically designed to transfer knowledge on the use of proximal soil sensor technology, as well as the associated software and its integration in the farm infrastructure to control farm input resources site specifically. SOILdarity’s team has been designed to provide FC.ID/CIÊNCIAS with the conditions to take full advantage of the scientific counterparts’ experience and solid background on soil, water management and precision agriculture.


These are the objectives of SOILdarity:

  • transfer of knowledge to FC.ID/CIÊNCIAS on key research challenges;
  • reinforcing FC.ID and CIÊNCIAS’ positioning in the EU research arena, seeking new alliances with top R&I organisations;
  • skill and capacity building for a new generation of young researchers, who will constitute the main capital of the Portuguese University in the years to come;
  • develop a stable framework dedicated to international cooperation and knowledge transfer.

Role of Ghent University

UGent will provide research and teaching expertise in sensing, modelling and control to optimize the use of fertilisers site specifically.


to be announced


Prof. Abdul M. Mouazen
Department of Environment
Phone number: + 32 9 264 6037