Tropical and subtropical agroecosystems
versão On-line ISSN 1870-0462
CANDELARIA MARTINEZ, Bernardino et al. Application of simulation models in agricultural research and planning, a review. Trop. subtrop. agroecosyt [online]. 2011, vol.14, n.3, pp. 999-1010. ISSN 1870-0462.
Since the beginnings of agriculture, about ten thousand years ago, mankind has benefited from the use of its products by satisfying needs for food and by trade. The agricultural production systems have become more organized and productive, as a result of a greater knowledge on agriculture. However, specialization in agronomyhas led in some cases to the implementation of technical innovations that put out key elements of the production systems, such as social and cultural aspects, climate, and physical, chemical and biological soil properties, that result in failure in the practice. The use of different types of models in agriculture has become an alternative for planning and research, since they can be used to predict the behavior of a plant or animal under different management practices, the soil characteristics, the interaction among different crops, and the behavior of production systems in which livestock and crops interact. Currently the effect of agricultural policies, the rationality of producers, the market characteristics and the environmental aspects have been incorporated. From the point of view of the theory of agroecosystems they have been used to simulate the sustainability, under a holistic and systemic vision. Another important development has been to consider the producer as subject that participates in the modeling process and not as a component of the system that needs to be modeled in what is called the participative modeling. Therefore, the objective of this paper is to analyze the different approaches for the application of the models for the study and planning of agriculture, and their challenges.
Palavras-chave : Components; modeling; agricultural production systems.