New expertise joins the Soil CRC

| Posted Aug 05,2021

L-R Prof Dan Murphy, Assoc Prof Fran Hoyle both from Murdoch University, Chris Gazey from DPIRD

The Soil CRC will increase its soil research capacity with two distinguished scientists joining one of its partner universities.

Professor Daniel Murphy and Associate Professor Frances Hoyle recently commenced at Murdoch University in Western Australia.

In joining Murdoch University, they also become part of the Soil CRC. They will be working alongside Professor Richard Harper, Professor Richard Bell, Associate Professor David Henry and others on projects that focus on the soil constraints that particularly face Western Australian and South Australian farmers.

Dr Michael Crawford, CEO of the Soil CRC says “the research of Daniel Murphy and Frances Hoyle is well known and respected in the soil community, and by farmers, especially in Western Australia. The Soil CRC is thrilled to benefit from their experience and expertise.”

The pair bring strong industry connections having established SoilsWest, an alliance between universities and the Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development (WA) that brings industry, government and academia together for the discovery and development of soil research.

Professor Murphy will be Director of the Centre for Sustainable Farming Systems at Murdoch University as he continues his major research programs addressing issues relating to the development of sustainable management practices for agriculture, horticulture and minesite rehabilitation.

“I’m really excited to be coming across to help consolidate agricultural research in Western Australia and, importantly, translational research,” said Professor Murphy.

“We’ve got some really exciting prospective work on improving nutrient and water use efficiency, regenerating soil function in farming systems and soil carbon sequestration as an area of research focus, which all present terrific opportunities for farmers in Western Australia and throughout other parts of Australia operating in similar environments.”

Associate Professor Hoyle, Director of SoilsWest, has a deep understanding of the challenges faced by WA farmers in managing low fertility, largely rainfed, crop production systems and the management of soil organic carbon.

“It is a great opportunity to not only join Murdoch University’s soils team but also to be part of the Soil CRC and contribute to both its research projects and the knowledge exchange needed to build confidence and drive practice change,” Professor Hoyle said.

“This team will continue to improve connections from the laboratory to the farm gate by delivering answers to the pressing questions that farmers have,” says Professor Peter Davies, Pro Vice Chancellor of the Food Futures Institute, Murdoch University.

Read more about the appointment of Professor Daniel Murphy and Associate Professor Frances Hoyle here.