Institute of

Farm Economics

New Technologies / Innovations

Drone with camera
Drone with camera (© Thünen-Institut/Thomas de Witte)

From a historical perspective, agriculture has always been driven by technological progress. During the 1950s, one farmer could feed only about ten people – today it’s more than 130. Technological progress in breeding, plant protection and agricultural technology made this boost in productivity possible. But today’s agricultural production systems are facing challenges: Examples are increasing resistances in crop farming, low lifetime production in dairy farming or the lack of qualified workers.

For this reason, we analyse and evaluate how new technologies help to succeed in dealing with these challenges. For this purpose, we address the following questions:

  1. How do innovations affect the competitiveness of farms?
  2. How do agricultural production processes and structures change with the use of new technologies?
  3. Which are the critical success factors for dissemination of the innovations?
  4. What can politics do to support the dissemination of new and environmentally friendly technologies?
  5. What can politics do to avoid or limit negative consequences of the use of new technologies?

The current focus of our work in this field are analyses regarding potentials and consequences of self-propelled machines / robots and “precision farming” in arable farming. Furthermore, we currently examine the economic impact of current innovations in horticulture.

For our analyses we cooperate with different institutes as the Julius-Kühn Institute or the TU-Braunschweig.

Field robot
Field robot (© Kompetenzzentrum COALA/Hochschule Osnabrück)
Demonstration of a drone
Demonstration of a drone (© Thünen-Institut/Thomas de Witte)

Projects of New Technologies / Innovations