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3rd Mediterranean Forum for PhD Students and Young Researchers (7TH FARMING SYSTEM DESIGN SYMPOSIUM)

Organization: Mediterranean Agronomic Institute of Montpellier
Categories: Environmental Studies, Food Studies, Science
Event Date: 2021-03-21 to 2021-03-24 Abstract Due: 2020-06-30


The Mediterranean Forum - MEDFORUM - is a bi-annual meeting point launched by CIHEAM in 2016 for PhD students and young researchers from the Mediterranean area.

For 2021, MEDFORUM is jointly organized by CIHEAM and ICARDA with the support of Agropolis Foundation. MEDFORUM 2021 is a special edition conference which will take part under the 7th Farming System Design (FSD) Symposium on 21-24 March 2021 in Tunisia.

The objectives of the forum are in line with those set by the FSD under the general theme of climate change and with focus on "Designing Climate Smart Agricultural Systems for a Sustainable Transition in the Agri-food Systems of the Dry Areas".

The MEDFORUM 2021 aims to foster communication, dialogue and co-publications between various institutions conducting scientific research in the field of rural development in Mediterranean countries with focus on dry and arid regions.

Financial Support

Around 20 to 25 student participants applying from Mediterranean countries will be selected for additional financial support in their participation in the forum. Covered fees will include registration and/or accommodation. 

Please review the forum topics and submission guidelines for your applications.

Selection of participants will take place with no discrimination on the basis of gender, race, religion, age, disability, marital status or any other relevant factor. Applications will be treated as first come first serve basis. The final selection will be based solely on the quality of applications as well as innovation and creativity of the suggested onstage presentations. We are committed to providing an inclusive environment for all interested students and young scholars.

Working Language: English

You can participate if you are:

  • Enrolled in PhD studies;
  • A young researcher of a Higher Education or Research Institute in the Euro-Mediterranean region;
  • Conducting research on the challenges of Mediterranean agriculture, specifically dry and arid regions.

Forum Topics

MEDFORUM 2021 encourages debate and innovative methods for onstage presentations. You are thus invited to apply keeping in mind the challenges and opportunities of arid and dry regions. Below are the general themes accepted by the MEDFORUM 2021 and the FSD 2021:

  1. Designing farming systems and climate services for adaptation to climate change and climate variability
  2. Multi-scale and multicriteria trade-off analysis to design sustainable and healthy agri-food systems
  3. Methods and tools to accelerate out-scaling and up-scaling of innovations in agriculture
  4. Assessment of socio-ecological resilience in agricultural landscapes
  5. System design in agriculture: state of the art and recent conceptual and methodological developments
  6. Accelerating agriculture transformation with big data, remote sensing and models
  7. Addressing the gender dimension of agricultural transformation
  8. Policies and institutional requirements to address SDGs through agricultural development
  9. Improving agriculture performance while decreasing synthetic input use : which progress
  10. Farming (pollination, crop protection) and feeding (human and animals) with insects
  11. Migration, conflicts and instability: is agriculture part of the problem or of the solution?
  12. Are development agencies and donors using the outcome of Farming Systems Design research?
  13. Climate smart, nutrition sensitive and job creative irrigated systems based on agro-biodiversity
  14. Contribution of the Rainfed cereal based systems to the food basket of the drylands
  15. The future of low rainfall agro-sylvo-pastoral systems under climate change: trends and opportunities for enhanced sustainability
  16. Integrated desert farming systems: scope and constraints for a sustainable expansion of agriculture in the deserts
  17. On-farm use of non traditional water (treated wastewater, saline water) for food production

Submission Guidelines - Deadline 30 June 2020


For your applications, please first refer to the submission rules of the FSD. https://fsd7.sciencesconf.org/resource/page/id/21 

Please note that to be considered for selection, ALL applicants must submit the abstracts required by the FSD prior to applying to MEDFORUM 2021.


Interested applicants are requested to submit one additional short motivation video of themselves. We recommend that videos are submitted simultaneously or directly after the FSD submission. The video should be divided in two sections and must clearly answer these two questions:

  • The Topic: Which theme do you choose? Where do you stand when it comes to that specific topic? What are your thoughts on the challenges and opportunities? What are the potential solutions from your perspective?
  • The Method: What will be your innovative method of onstage presentation? How will you animate and demonstrate your work on stage to best convey your message in 5 to 7 minutes? We recommend avoiding classic slideshows.


  • The duration of the application video must not exceed 3 to 5 minutes.
  • For submission, upload your videos to the CIHEAM Montpellier Cloud under the format .mp4 at https://cloud.iamm.fr/index.php/s/ckjp9xAmfXoxKLe
  • File names should read as follows: LastName_FirstName_Country.mp4

MEDFORUM 2021 sessions will take under the FSD symposium. The full program is available at https://fsd7.sciencesconf.org/program

Participants are invited to attend the entire FSD activities including plenary and parallel sessions, field visits, side events, and others.


  • 1 March 2020: Opening of submission
  • 30 June 2020: Deadline for submission
  • 15 September 2020: Notification acceptance or rejection of applications
  • 1 July 2020: Opening for early bird registration
  • 30 September 2020: Full submission deadline



Hatem Belhouchette