What is a START Research HUB?

START is a research platform and a dynamic network of academic researchers from the Danish Universities. The activities within START is directed by the START Research Hubs.  

A START research hub is an integrative, inclusive and interdisciplinary setup where researchers interested in an overall topic with relation to the green transition of the Agrifood System are interconnected. A HUB is based “virtually” on one of the Danish Universities and is orchestrated by a dedicated HUB anchor researcher with administrative support from the related university.  

Already at the recent kick-off event there were several researchers expressing a clear interest to join the various hubs. Below you find find a list and additional information on the current START research Hubs. We invite all researchers at the Danish Universities to join these hubs and to provide inputs for additional hubs. 

The 10 suggested hubs represent various areas of interest, and was presented at the kick-off by participants from 5 different universities. The key focus areas in the suggested hubs are:

1. Multifunctional land use (biodiversity and the environment)

  • Tradeoff between the challenges (food production, climate solutions, biodiversity)  

2. Food - post harvest

  • Atomization within food production in order to improve quality and safety food and workers
  • Valorisation of side streams (circular)
  • Supply chain gaps
  • Mapping out values, choices, barriers of citizens and companies and incentives  

3. Land

  • The scientific challenges and bottlenecks: Diverse cropping systems (dealing with complexity) optimize integrate animal production
  • The societal challenges: Food security, environment (e.g., climate/water)  

4. Cultivation (Land)scapes

  • Integrating knowledge areas/new problem-solving possibilities

5. Future agrifood systems

  • Societal sustainable farming ecosystems: Monopolies - security - vulnerability - policy decisions; Paradigm shift to perenial crops - "higher yield" of the land - products + byproducts - cascading technologies - precision fermentation + biorefine - novel foods  

6. Health aspects: nutrition, food safety and well-being

  • The green transition could have negative impact on consumer ac-ceptance and health and food safety. Thus, nutritional value (plant-rich solutions), composition of the diet and food safety must be considered when planning the green transformation and the circular economy.  

7. Selfefficiency in nutrients

  • How to quantify: 1) Leakage; 2) Connectivity; 3) Food types? Side streams?  

8. Together: Blueing the Green & Greening the Blue

  • Green-Blue Innovation
  • Biodiversity
  • Sidestreams
  • Resource saving interactions/interlinking  

9. Infrastructure and technology in X

  • Digitalisation, robotics, data analytics and data sharing + storage
  • Should feed into other hubs  

10. People & Practices