Managing water scarcity in European and Chinese cropping systems

SHui project has celebrated their General Assemby for 2019 in Vienna (Austria) from September 9th to 13th. From the University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences Vienna (BOKU), Professors Andreas Kilk and Jose Gomez led the Consortium.

The first two days of the project were devoted to the revision of the current status of the different WPs, discussion of key issues and decision on activities planned for the next year.



The following two days were devoted to a workshop on catchment hydrologic celebrated in Institute for land and Water Management Research (Federal Agency for Water Management) in Petzenkirchen. This workshop was leaded by Professor Peter Strauss and during the workshop the participants visited the Hydrological Open Air Lab (HOAL) and the long-term plot experiment at the Agricultural Technical School of Pyhra. In these sites the different experiments and technologies used were showed and discussed.

This meeting consolidated the frame build during first year within SHui, and help to take important decisions for accelerating the pace of the project generating scientific and technical results since its second year.




From April 1st to 5th, the SHui project held its first official conference in Fujian Agricultural and Forestry University, Fuzhou, China after gaining sponsorship from the Chinese Ministry of Science and Technology (MOST), complementing existing European Union funding. The conference was co-chaired by Professors Jose Gomez and Xu Weifeng, leading scientists from the European and Chinese sides respectively.

At the opening ceremony, Zheng Baodong, Vice President of Fujian Agricultural and Forestry University, delivered a speech emphasising the national importance of water management issues in both China and Europe. He pointed out that farmland water resources currently constrain agricultural production in both China and Europe, and that closer cooperation between scientists and water managers was needed to implement sustainable solutions. He hoped that the SHui project would strengthen China-EU international cooperation, providing opportunities for researcher exchanges to work together to achieve important breakthroughs.






All partner institutions and universities were present at this event, along with members of the project’s International Advisory Board and project officers commissioned by the MOST. Many locally based academics from the Academic of Science and Technology, the College of Life Sciences, the College of Resources and Environment and the College of Crop Science also attended the meeting.

Apart from the official business of the project, during which Chinese and European Work Package Leaders presented their vision for the upcoming work, there was the opportunity for all attendees to update their skills. Following the official close of business, 35 delegates attended a workshop on Crop Growth and Hydrological modelling on April 4th, along with a “recess visit” to the nearby Jinshan Soil and Water Conservation demonstration park of the Fuzhou school. Although the workshop was aimed primarily at early-career scientists, it was obvious that even established academics could learn a lot about model design and implementation from the tutors:


    • Mr Tomas Roquette Tenreiro (University of Cordoba, Spain)


    • Dr David Zumr (Czech Technical University, Prague, Czech Republic)


    • Dr Jiale Wang (Changjian River Science Research Institute, China)



To gain a personal perspective from one of the tutors, read Tomas’ reflections here.

With a busy summer of experiments and field work planned ahead, the consortium plans to meet next in Vienna in September 2019 to report the latest progress.