The BEYOND project

Building epidemiological surveillance and prophylaxis with observations near and distant

The BEYOND project is part of France’s Priority Research Program “Growing and Protecting Crops Differently”, an initiative to intensely mobilize the principles of agroecology and prophylaxis in order to pave the way for the emergence of an agriculture that is free of synthetic pesticides by 2030-2040.

The BEYOND project focuses on enhancing epidemiological surveillance strategies by developing new indicators of risk of plant disease and by proposing new types of plans for achieving surveillance.

The project aims to expand the scope of surveillance – both in terms of space and time – in order to diversify opportunities for prophylaxis and to give more time for prophylaxis to take effect. This change of scope will be accompanied by new concepts and paradigms about the factors that influence disease emergence and progress and by new rational for decision-making to implement prophylaxis. The main goals are to:

  • rationally integrate the available plethora of potential indicators from smart sensors, social networks, digital maps and remotely-sensed imagery into epidemiological models and then make them accessible for epidemiologists,
  • educate epidemiologists to incorporate new indicators into their reasoning when elucidating key epidemiological processes that can be leveraged to protect plant health, and
  • create tools to accompany farmers and other stakeholders in decision making relevant to a new age of surveillance information and to the goal of broadening their options for managing plant health beyond the use of synthetic pesticides.

Chapeau Edito

Redactor: C.E. Morris