Most crop productivity is limited by management. The research done by the Ecosystem Services team and Food From Thought will refine the management style of farmers to help close the global yield gap whilst ensuring natural environments and services are conserved. 


Increase environmental sustainability on high-production agricultural landscapes. 


“Our project focuses on quantifying ecosystem services on farms to increase environmental sustainability in agriculturally-intensive landscapes. The overarching goals are to measure farm impacts on environmental baselines, benefits of farm-based remediation, and advantages of ecosystem services to society and farmers.” - Andrew MacDougall

Scroll down to find out more about each project. 


Clean Air

Measure the impact of farming on air quality using environmental baselines

Current research is looking at: 

 Long-term prospects for soil carbon storage using targeted tallgrass prairie restorations in agroecosystems


Clean Water

Measuring the impact of agriculture practices on water quality. 

Current research is looking at: 

Nutrient retention potential of tallgrass prairies on marginal lands within conventional farms



Measuring the impact of agricultural practices on aquatic and terrestrial biodiversity. 

Current research is looking at: 

Assessing the effect of plant structure on arthropod predator assembly using experimental farm plots

How the species composition of insect communities change seasonally and by land-use intensity in agroecosystems

Habitat-based drivers of arthropod abundance and richness in an intensively farmed agricultural landscape

Small restored areas of high quality habitat have big impacts on native pollinators on conventional farms. 


This research was undertaken thanks in part to funding from the Canada First Research Excellence Fund.

Food Fom Thought link
Canada First Research Excellence Fund Link