Introducing New UNL Agronomist Patricio Grassini
Narrowing the gap between actual and potential crop yield is one of several research interests for Patricio Grassini, a new assistant professor in the University of Nebraska-Lincoln Department of Agronomy and Horticulture.
Grassini is leading a project to benchmark on-farm yields and input-use efficiencies in irrigated corn and soybean systems in Nebraska, looking for opportunities to improve producer profits while protecting the environment. He also is contributing to development of a Global Yield Gap Atlas (www.yieldgap.org), an international effort to identify gaps between actual and potential yield for major cropping systems.
His research interests include crop physiology, yield potential, simulation modeling, and resource- and energy-use efficiency across a diverse range of cropping systems, including dryland crops in South America and Sub-Saharan Africa and high-yield irrigated corn and soybean in the U.S. Corn Belt.
As with many faculty in the UNL Institute of Agriculture and Natural Resources, he has a joint appointment with responsibilities for research and extension.
Grassini received his B.S. in agricultural engineering from the University of Buenos Aires in 2007. He was awarded a Fulbright scholarship and a Fling Fellowship to pursue his doctorate in agronomy at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln where he studied with agronomist Ken Cassman.
"The move was not easy: a new place, a new language, new people, but UNL proved to be a perfect environment to productively conduct my studies and research," Grassini said. "At an academic level, I was constantly guided and encouraged in my studies, and at a personal level I made lots of good friends."
Grassini worked on yield gaps and water productivity of high-yield irrigated corn in Nebraska using producer-reported data coupled with crop simulation modeling and geo-statistical analysis, completing work on his Ph.D. in 2010. Afterward he held positions at UNL as a post-doctoral research associate and then as a non-tenured research assistant professor. During this time, Grassini coauthored several articles for CropWatch on actual and modeled corn yields.
"I am very passionate about my work and I am thrilled to continue working for UNL as a tenure-track professor," he said.
Grassini was born and raised in Temperley, in the outskirts of Buenos Aires, Argentina. He holds a dual citizenship from Argentina and Italy, as his grandparents migrated to Argentina in the late 1940s. He is planning to be married in Italy this June to an Italian woman who is pursuing her doctorate in American literature at UNL. He enjoys long walks, biking Lincoln's trails, gardening, and exploring Nebraska's small towns on weekends.
"I simply feel grateful for living such a rewarding life in both professional and personal terms!," Grassini wrote.
Following is his contact information:
378 Plant Science Hall, UNL
Lincoln NE 68583-0915