Stefania Fontanazza

PhD Student - XXXIV Cycle Agricultural, Food and Environmental Science - Tutor: Cristina Abbate
Office: Via Santa Sofia, 98 - Piano 1
Phone: 095 7580230

(update on 21/7/2020)


2019-2022 PhD course in Agricultural, Food and Environmental Science (cycle XXXIV), Department of Agriculture, Food and Environment, University of Catania.

June 2018 Agricultural consultant, art.8 par.3 Legislative Decree 150/2012, Regional Department of Agriculture, Rural Development and Mediterranean Fisheries, Gela.

Dic 2016 – Feb 2017 Training course in Design for sustainability and organic system, Gaia education, Catania.

July 2016 Master’s Degree in Agricultural Sciences and Technologies, Department of Agriculture, Food and Environment, University of Catania. Final mark: 110/110 (with honours).

March 2014 Bachelor’s Degree in Agricultural Sciences and Technologies, Department of Agriculture, Food and Environment, University of Catania. Final mark: 105/110.

2009 High School Diploma, Liceo Scientifico A. Volta, Caltanissetta. Final mark: 88/100.


PhD research project: “Utilization of cover crops and biodegradable mulching for the sustainable management in a Mediterranean agro-ecosystem”.

The project aims to gain new scientific knowledges in order to define innovative agronomical tactics (practices) and strategies (models) for a sustainable management of polycultural systems (peach orchards subjected to cover cropping and biodegradable mulching), while maximizing the efficiency in the use of native resources (rainfall, solar radiation, phytonutrients), preserving soil chemical, physical and biological fertility, rebalancing the relationship among fruit trees, weeds and cover crops. The final goal is to significantly reduce both external inputs and cultivation costs, and to improve the quali-quantitative aspects of peaches production. The project, which involves a comparison among different types of soil management in a peach orchard (tilled and without vegetation; covered with weeds; covered with subterranean clover; biodegradable mulching), will analyze the production process from an agroecological point of view. At the same time, there is the need to understand how cover crops and biodegradable mulching can affect the soil microflora, specially the microbial activities involved in nitrogen cycle. The research program, implemented on farm, is designed in order to acquire more comprehensive scientific data and facilitate their transfer to local stakeholders. This approach will ensure a response to the increasing demand for innovation, efficiency and environmental compatibility of the Sicilian agroecosystems.

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