With limited water resources to divert for agriculture, innovations aimed at increasing efficient use of irrigation water must be developed. Among the means to survive the consequences of water scarcity and yet to sustain high crop production under irrigated agriculture with decreasing share of water, deficient irrigation programmes are highly valued and their adoption is widely promoted. However, to ensure that the same level of crop yields as in full irrigation can still be achieved with deficient irrigation, experience regarding crop yield response to deficient irrigation programs must be gained. This text discusses general concept and management issues of deficient irrigation practices, covering a range of field crops including cotton, maize, soybean, wheat, sugar cane, and the like, based on five years of field research implemented in 14 countries, in Latin America, Africa, Europe and Asia. Additionally, guidelines are given for experimental methodology and data analysis for evaluating crop yield response to deficient irrigation.
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