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    Digitization in agriculture has rapidly accelerated over the past decade and the pace of innovation continues to increase. Innovative technologies such as blockchain-based supply chain management solutions, Al-based digital agronomy, autonomous and semiautonomous machines, and loT/remote sensing solutions have created an overwhelming amount of information.

    This has all been in the service of feeding a rapidly growing population under increasingly challenging climate conditions. However, to truly accomplish this goal of feeding the world, solutions must now become more synergistic and the underlying standards that are required for this do not exist.

  • The UASPSE project, BD Spokes: SPOKE: MIDWEST: Digital Agriculture - Unmanned Aircraft Systems, Plant Sciences and Education (NSF Award # 1636865), wrapped up its activities this month with the publication of nine OpenAccess articles in the September/October 2022 issue of Agronomy Journal under the Special Section: Big Data Promises and Obstacles: Agricultural Data Ownership and Privacy.


    Agronomy Journal Volume 114, Issue 5 Pages: 2619-3053 September/October 2022

    Special Section topics include:

  • Agriculture and Food Research Initiative—Foundational and Applied Science Program

    Applications due: August 11–November 17, 2022 (depending on program area)

  • August 17, 2022Written by MBDH

    By Raleigh Butler

    Recently, there has been a large amount of U.S. federal funding directed toward next-generation precision-agriculture initiatives. This article summarizes a few such projects based in the Midwest.  Read more here.

  • The Midwest Big Data Hub has a paid internship open to grad and advanced undergrad students across the 12-state Midwest region.  Interested students may find more details here:

  • The Ag Data Coop works to create data-driven agricultural production systems, producers will need access to data, simulations, forecasts, and predictions to learn how they can transform their operations and enhance productivity. The overall goal of this project is to develop a blueprint for a national data framework and cooperative where producers, universities, and not-for-profit entities can store and share data and develop powerful tools that enable producers to maximize their production and profitability. The National Agricultural Producer Data Cooperative (NAPDC) will:

    Develop a blueprint for a national agricultural producers data framework by identifying needs and opportunities as well as challenges in physical infrastructure, human resources, and use cases;

  • Looking for collaborators in data science? The MBDH Collaboration Cafe is open!

    The Collaboration Cafe is a monthly webinar open to all that is focused on building a community of data science researchers in the Midwest and beyond to explore funding opportunities and develop proposals. We are focused on elevating early-career scholars, particularly from under-resourced institutions, but everyone is welcome, including participants from industry, nonprofits, and government agencies.

  • The Midwest Big Data Innovation Hub has a call for proposals for its Community Development and Engagement program. This program provides support for new cross-sector community-building initiatives that align with the Midwest Big Data Innovation Hub's "Smart & Resilient Communities" Priority Area.  Join the Q&A webinar for prospective proposers July 19, 2022, 3:00 p.m.CT.

    Preferred activities will bring together partners from academia, not-for-profit community organizations, government agencies, and industry, and introduce new partners to data science, including historically underrepresented groups and under-resourced institutions. The focus of the activities should be on building capacity for projects that address data-related issues in relation to community resilience.

  • Carbon capture, cybersecurity and environmental sustainability are complex problems that need diverse teams to help address them in a holistic manner. It is expected that significant levels of funding will be available in these areas over the next several years. The Midwest Big Data Hub is focused on building networks and collaborations to advance progress and strengthen data ecosystems -  the Digital and Precision Ag spoke of the Midwest Big Data Hub announces the following Digital Ag seed funds to catalyze the formation of diverse teams across institutions in these three focus areas.

    Please see THE Midwest Big Data Hub –Digital Ag Seed Funding (pdf) for additional information.

  • Our world food production system is undergoing a dramatic shift towards sustainable food practices and increased food security. Space agriculture, and the technology it creates, could catalyze the development of high-yield crop production that requires less land and less energy, providing farmers with the ability to create more with less. At Space Ag Conference, discussions focused on what it will take to accelerate innovation and move forward with the Agtech industry.  Find presentation links here:

  • Partnering to grow the data science community in the Midwest - The next round of Community Development and Engagement program is now open for proposals! The Midwest Big Data Innovation Hub provides support for new community-led initiatives that focus on key data challenges in the Midwest.

    For this call, focus in on incubating activities that bring together communities from two or more of our Priority Areas, and two or more sectors (academia, industry, government, and nonprofits / civic organizations). This call has rolling submissions. Please notify us ( that you intend to develop a proposal before submitting.

    Visit our website for the full call for proposals, the proposal template, eligibility information, and FAQs.

  • Community Development and Engagement Program Proposals due July 5, 2021.

    The Community Development and Engagement program is open for proposals through 11:59 p.m. CT July 12, 2021! 

    The Midwest Big Data Innovation Hub provides support for new community-led initiatives that focus on key data challenges in the Midwest, including building data science educational capacity, bringing together cross-discipline and cross-sector communities that share interests, and removing barriers to data sharing. 

    This year our focus is on fostering creative partnerships, including:

  • Grand Farm: seeking Early Career researchers to participate in the Workshop on Big Data and Agricultural Carbon Sequestration

    In collaboration with Grand Farm, the Digital Ag UASPSE project (NSF #1636865) is seeking Early Career researchers to participate in the Workshop on Big Data and Agricultural Carbon Sequestration on Wed, July 14, 2021 in Fargo, ND. The workshop will be co-located with Cultivate Conference 2021.
    UASPSE will provide travel reimbursement for a limited number of Early Career researchers to attend the workshop and the Cultivate Conference held on the following day, Thursday, July 15, 2021.
    Purpose: Gather industry, government, and academic stakeholders with the goal of researcher/industry match making and proposal development around topics related to Big Data and Agricultural Carbon Sequestration, including, but not limited to:

  • The NIFA-funded Agricultural Genome to Phenome Initiative (AG2PI, is conducting a community survey. The focus of AG2PI is to build cross-kingdom research communities to address the challenges of genome to phenome (G2P) research and find opportunities to work together to identify shared critical research gaps. Importantly, this is an opportunity for the community to share with the USDA a vision that may be used to guide future USDA requests for proposals in this space.

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