Department of Plant Sciences
My research project aims to develop a better scientific understanding of nitrogen (N) balance as an agronomic and environmental indicator in sustainable agriculture. During the last years, N balance has been proposed as a tool to track changes in management and evaluate progress towards N loss reduction targets. Despite growing interest in this indicator, important questions remain on whether how broad the relationship between N balance and N losses is. There are also several assumptions underlying its calculation that need further investigation as well as factors influencing components in the N balance equation. This project aims to address these questions while contributing to understanding the reliability of N balance in agriculture.
Santiago was born in Rosario city (Argentina). He studied Agronomy (2013) at the National University of Rosario, where he began to work as an undergraduate research assistant in maize field experiments and also earned his MS in Plant Breeding and Genetics in 2015. During this period, he gained extensive knowledge of maize ecophysiology and response to abiotic stress, management, and nitrogen nutrition. After graduating from his MS, Santiago started his Ph.D. at the Agronomy Department at Kansas State University. His dissertation explored different aspects of soybean crop physiology related to nitrogen nutrition with emphasis on biological nitrogen fixation and its impact on seed yield and seed composition.
My research interests are the physiological basis involved in plant growth and nutrient dynamics that are determinant in grain yield formation and grain nutritional composition in different crops. I study how these processes interact in the context of current agricultural systems and their implications to achieve greater resource-use efficiency in grain production. I am also interested in the integration of crop ecophysiology and management to meet more sustainable crop production systems while reducing off-farm environmental impacts.