Jasper den Besten, a professor at HAS University of Applied Sciences (‘s-Hertogenbosch, the Netherlands), shared his opinion on Urban Greenhouse Challenge: Reforest, an international competition of student projects.
The competition is held at a Russian university for the first time. Its main host is Tomsk Polytechnic University. The registration of student teams is currently ongoing on the official website of the event. The teams will compete for the prize pool of $10 000.
Professor Jasper den Besten, an expert in selective breeding, plant physiology, and greenhouse vegetable production became one of the lecturers of the Urban Greenhouse Challenge. He gave a lecture on a Dutch approach to high-tech horticulture in greenhouses and vertical farms, as well as explained why such events could be useful not only for the participants but also for the field development in general.
“Such competitions provide an ideal opportunity to create a trial product at the early stages of research and development. The things that non-specialists can create with a set of modern tools such as artificial intelligence, machine learning, and so on, are amazing, even when they do not have enough knowledge in agricultural sciences and technologies,” the professor says.
“I assume we as professionals can do much better than the teams participating in the competition, however, we actually need them to open our eyes!”