Forming the Future of Agrohydrology


Agricultural water management is increasingly prioritized throughout the world as producers are tasked with meeting growing crop demand while also managing environmental resources more sustainably. Likewise, agriculture is increasingly modifying the terrestrial water cycle. In response to these dynamics, the informal research discipline of agrohydrology continues to grow, fueled by a new era of rapidly evolving research tools and big data availability. While many researchers are actively invested in agrohydrology as a research topic, there remains a gap in formalizing this valuable discipline. This article aims to: (a) identify key research themes in agrohydrology, (b) conceptualize future research topics within each theme, and (c) estimate a timeframe before topics become pressing (i.e., before a topic becomes a limiting factor in advancing water management in an agricultural context). This commentary is meant to guide the trajectory of an evolving discipline of agrohydrology, the practice of agricultural water management at multiple nested scales, and the conversation of the invested public.

Earth’s Future
Sam Zipper
HEAL PI; Assistant Scientist/Professor

I specialize in ecohydrology and hydrogeology of agricultural and urban landscapes.