At the Agricultural Informatics Lab, we conduct design research and technology development to improve resilience in food and agricultural systems. We build a range of products, from farmer-facing decision support tools and community-oriented local food system toolkits to developer-facing APIs that serve a range of agricultural data. We conduct human-centered design research, translate our findings into usable and useful software prototypes, think critically about the role of technology in local and global food systems, and build real tools for real users.

Each of our projects includes: a partnership with domain experts and communities (e.g., agronomy researchers, farmers, food hub coordinators), a mix of undergraduate students, graduate students, senior personnel, and interdisciplinary faculty. All our work is grounded in community needs and desires and results in open-source projects.

Our Research

cropmodel 3d graphic
Designing a Digital Horticultural Toolbox

The DDHT project’s goal is to design decision support tools for midwestern fruit and...

Learn more
smart farm drawing graphic
Smart Small Farm Testbed

Digitizing farms with technologies like IoT or robots is more accessible than ever before....

Lean More
group of 4 people on a meeting
Modeling Foodsheds for Data-Driven Policymaking

Policy can have wide-reaching effects on our food system and community welfare. This project aims...

Learn more
diagram data-pipeline
Ag Data Infrastructure

Modeling data flows across USDA NRCS and other agencies to streamline the data management...

Learn more
covercrop tool website screenshot
Cover Crop Decision Support

Designing a suite of modular, open source, mobile-friend, offline-compatible software...

Learn more
pond with moss and other plants
Biodiversity & Conservation Planning

Using participatory design to develop databases and tools for conservation planners and farmers,...

Learn more
student presenting a poster
Plant Data Service

Developing an open-source plant data API that integrates diverse plant data as commonly desired...

Learn more

Our Process

instructor talking to studentsWe facilitate community-driven research to understand human-computer interaction challenges toward the design of human-centered solutions.

female adults chatting on a computer in a video conference We co-create interoperable public agricultural datasets with expert crowds, integrating and modeling heterogeneous data. This results in open-access and community-owned datasets and standards.

graphic of moss system dataWe develop domain-appropriate descriptive and predictive computational models and simulation tools for decision support across spatiotemporal scopes.

luna mandarin problems graphicWe prototype digital tools and release these as open-source projects. Our tech transfer process involves training and shepherding the originating community to be able to maintain/update tools in the longer term.

people gather in a poster session presentationWe engage in public education via community organizing and outreach.

people gather in a poster session presentationWe educate the next-gen of agtech workers, through open educational materials and experiential learning events.

Engage with us

Join the lab