Prof. José Enrique Fernández Luque

  • IRNAS-CSIC (Seville-Spain)

J.E. Fernández got his Ph.D.on Agronomy in 1989. Latter he spent two years at Silsoe Research Institute (UK), and in 1993 he won a permanent position as titular scientist in the CSIC, joining the IRNAS. Dr Fernández is specialized on plant water relationships of crops typical of arid and semi-arid areas. He has worked with both herbaceous and woody crops, being olive the species with which he has worked more. In the last years he has focused to the design of irrigation strategies for deficit irrigation, and in methods to schedule precise irrigation from plant-based measurements. He developed most of this work for olive orchards of different management and plant densities, including hedgerow orchards with high plant densities of super-high-density orchards. Currently, he is interested on applying these approaches for a sustainable intensive agriculture in which the grower profit is ensured, the biodiversity is enriched, the efficiency of the use of water in agriculture is enhanced and the socioeconomic aspects of the rural areas are improved. Dr. Fernández has contributed, through his collaborations with other research groups and private companies, to the development of several methods for the assessment of water stress and irrigation scheduling in fruit tree orchards, from automatic and continuous measurements related to sap flow, trunk diameter variations and leaf turgor pressure. His latest publications include aspects on irrigation economy.

In 2006 he founded the Grupo de Riegos y Ecofisiología de cultivos (Grupo REC), leading he group since then. From April 2015 to June 2018, Dr. Fernández worked as Coordinator of Agriculture for the Spanish Agency of Evaluation and Prospective (ANEP). Since 2013 is Editor in Chief of the scientific journal Agricultural Water Management (IF= 6,6). In 2012 and 2013 he was deputy director of the IRNAS and, since November 2014, he is the director of the institute. Dr. Fernández has supervised 14 research projects and has participated in another 14 projects. He has also supervised 8 contracts with private companies, and has participated in another 4. In addition, he has supervised 9 Ph.D. Thesis (two of them with an award on the best Thesis of the year on the topic), plus 17 “Trabajos Fin de Carrera”, TFMs y TFGs. He has 78 SCI papers, 45 non SCI, 22 monographs and book chapters and 18 divulgative papers.


  • Approaches to meet the coming challenges in irrigation

    We address main responses from the scientific and technical communities to the challenges that irrigators meet for ensuring food security in a context of growing population and climatic threat. Basically, more food, fibre and biofuel must be produced at the same time than the environment is preserved and fair profits for the growers are guaranteed. […]