National agricultural programs in South Asia often do not engage in strategic research to address critical biophysical constraints or poor farmer needs. I have been involved in building and facilitating functional relationships between international and national NGOs, community based farmer groups, agricultural extension and national agricultural scientists, so that research activities become more demand driven and relevant to farmers needs. I also utilize my technical expertise to help national scientists and students in South Asia design and carry out probing and meaningful experiments to address critical issues related to soils, such as alternative tillage approaches, residue/biomass use for soil improvement, soil micronutrient deficiencies and improving soil biological health conditions. These connections also involve efforts to improve the technical capabilities of national scientists to adequately measure critical soil chemical properties or to assess the quality of their existing data.
Most of my recent research has focused on diagnosing and addressing sustainability problems in the rice-wheat cropping systems of India, Nepal and Bangladesh. Key areas of investigation have been: solarization for improving the root/soil health of transplanted crops (rice, vegetables); permanent raised bed systems to reduce the economic, water and soil problems of conventional and arsenic effected rice based cropping systems; quantifying soil carbon sequestration under minimum and zero tillage practices; seed priming and enrichment approaches to alleviate pervasive soil micronutrient deficiencies and developing lime recommendations for acid soils in Bangladesh.
Recently my research has expanded to include improving crop productivity of grain legumes for reinvigorating degraded soils of smallholder mixed farming systems of Western Kenya.
Outreach and Extension Focus
I have been working for over 14 years developing soil management practices to improve food & nutritional outputs and agricultural sustainability in the rice-wheat cropping systems of South Asia. I co-direct Cornell's Food for Progress Program in Bangladesh which involves national scale technology dissemination & capacity building activities focused on: (i) liming for strongly acid soils; (ii) raised beds as a Resource Conservation technology and (iii) management of arsenic contaminated soils. This outreach effort is being implemented in partnership with Bangladesh government scientists and extension, an autonomous development institute, a large national NGO and an agricultural university.
I bring an international and soil science perspective to classes which explore crop performance and management of major food, feed, and fiber crops. My intent is to engage students to broaden their understanding of food production both in the US and abroad, in order to better address the future challenges of feeding the World's burgeoning populations.
Awards and Honors
- Faculty Fellow (2020) Atkinson Center for Sustainable Futures
- Johnson-Beebout, S. E., Lauren, J. G., & Duxbury, J. M. (2009). Immobilization of zinc fertilizer in flooded soils monitored by adapted DTPA soil test. Communications in Soil Science and Plant Analysis. 40:1842-1861.
- Gami , S. K., Lauren, J. G., & Duxbury, J. M. (2009). Influence of soil texture and cultivation on carbon and nitrogen levels in soils of the eastern Indo-Gangetic Plains. Geoderma. 153:304-311.
- Panaullah, G. M., Alam, T., Hossain, M. B., Loeppert, R. H., Lauren, J. G., Meisner, C. A., Ahmed, Z. U., & Duxbury, J. M. (2009). Arsenic toxicity to rice (Oryza sativa L.) in Bangladesh. Plant and Soil. 317:31-39.
- Johansen, C., Musa, A. M., Kumar Rao, J. D., Harris, D., Ali, M. Y., Shahidullah, A. M., & Lauren, J. G. (2007). Correcting molybdenum deficiency of chickpea in the High Barind Tract of Bangladesh. Journal of Plant Nutrition and Soil Science. 170:1-10.
- Johnson, S. E., Lauren, J. G., Welch, R. M., & Duxbury, J. M. (2005). A comparison of the effects of micronutrient seed priming and soil fertilization on the mineral nutrition of chickpea (Cicer arietinum), lentil (Lens culinaris), rice (Oryza sativa) and wheat (Triticum aestivum) in Nepal. Experimental Agriculture. 41:427-448.
- Lauren, J. G., Pettygrove, G. S., & Duxbury, J. M. (1994). Methane emissions associated with a green manure amendment to flooded rice in California. Biogeochemistry. 24:53-64.
- Duxbury, J. M., Lauren, J. G., Talukder, A. H., Sufian, M. A., Hossain, M. I., Dahal, K. R., Tripathi, J., Giri, G. S., Shaheed, A., Devare, M. H., & Meisner, C. A. (2004). Opportunities and Constraints for Reduced Tillage Practices in the Rice-Wheat Cropping System. p. p. 121-131 Sustainable agriculture and the international rice-wheat system R. Lal, P.Hobbs, N. Uphoff, D.O. Hansen (ed.), Marcel Dekker, Inc., New York.
- Bodruzzaman, M., Rahman, G., Islam, M., Roy, M., Duxbury, J. M., & Lauren, J. G. (2014). Lime Technology for the Acid Soil Regions of Bangladesh. p. 49 USDA Food for Progress Program, Dhaka, Bangladesh.
- Hossain, M., Hossain, M., Siddquie, M., Panaullah, G., Duxbury, J. M., & Lauren, J. G. (2014). Raised Beds: A Resource Conserving Technology for Improved Crop Production in Bangladesh. p. 47 USDA Food for Progress Program, Dhaka, Bangladesh.
- Lauren, J. G., Medvecky, B. A., Ojiem, J. O., Okalebo, R. O., Mwonga, S. M., Muthomi, J. W., & Nderitu, J. O. (2009). Pulses CRSP 2009 Annual Report -- Using Improved Pulse Crop Productivity to Reinvigorate Smallholder Mixed Farming Systems in Western Kenya. Dry Grain Pulses CRSP- Michigan State University, East Lansing, Michigan, USA.