In the complex topography of the semi-arid Peruvian Andes, the strong gradients of temperature and precipitation have shaped the local agriculture. Traditional farming practices rely on experience gained by generations of farmers about the local weather and climate.

Recent climate change, which coincides with increasing food and water demand from the expanding cities, has transformed and challenged the small-scale subsidence farming. In order to develop efficient adaptation strategies, it is crucial to

  • better quantify the recent variability and change of climate variables relevant for rain-fed agriculture
  • identify the most resilient crops and agricultural methods for present and expected near-future climate conditions.

In this project, we follow a transdisciplinary strategy combining atmospheric and crop modelling with in-situ and remote sensing observations, as well as interactions with local farmers and scientists. We aim to merge these data and methods to identify the main vulnerabilities of today’s farming practices and develop a model framework that can be used to address agroclimatic research questions in the region. This tool will form the scientific basis for a series of practical recommendations oriented towards local stake holders and communities.

Our study area spans a west-east transect from the Cordillera Negra to the Cordillera Blanca at the latitude of the city of Huaraz. Our team, originating from various countries and backgrounds, is joined by a strong network of international collaborations and by a team of Peruvian scientists, field workers and farmers.