Title: Opening Plenary Session sponsored by IPNI
Date: Tue Jul 25, 2017
Time: 9:00 AM - 11:00 AM
Moderator: Steve Phillips
Welcome to InfoAg
Steve Phillips (speaker)
North America Program Director, Southeast United States
International Plant Nutrition Institute
Owens Cross Roads, AL 35763
Dr. Steve Phillips is Director of the Southeast United States region of the International Plant Nutrition Institute (IPNI). Dr. Phillips' duties include development and dissemination of educational materials focused on the efficient and effective use of plant nutrients. In addition to his regional responsibilities, Dr. Phillips also serves as chair of an international IPNI workgroup focused on spatial and temporal variability issues in agriculture. Dr. Phillips holds a B.S. degree from Cameron University in Lawton, OK, and M.S. and Ph.D. degrees from Oklahoma State University.
Length (approx): 10 min
PrecisionAg Awards of Excellence

Precision agriculture products and practices have been enhanced and improved over the past two decades in large part by the work of innovative and driven individuals and organizations. The PrecisionAg Awards of Excellence program sheds light on some of the most important people and programs that have helped agriculture realize the full benefits of technology to improve agronomy, efficiency, and stewardship in crop production. The Awards of Excellence program is sponsored by the PrecisionAg Institute and its supporting partners.

Paul Schrimpf (speaker)
Executive Editor
CropLife Media Group
Willoughby, OH, NA 44094
Paul is the Group Editor for the CropLife Media Group at Meister Media Worldwide, with full editorial responsibility for CropLife, CropLife IRON, and AgriBusiness Global.
Length (approx): 20 min
Beyond Big Data - Digital Agriculture

Since World War II society, business and agriculture have experienced, enjoyed, and been challenged with change driven by information technology. The list of next BIG THINGS extends thru mainframe computers, PCs, the Internet, precision agriculture and Big Data. While the promise of Big Data in agriculture has received attention and publicity lately, the underlying change factor for agriculture is embedded in the term, Data, not the term, Big. The exciting driver of change is the application of digital technologies to agricultural production, distribution and marketing.  This discussion will focus on the impacts and opportunities of these applications. Drawing on lessons from the non-ag economy as well as from agriculture, the conversation will speculate as to future dynamics associated with digital technology application to agriculture. As we strive to use data and analytics to resolve our known unknowns, where will we find unknown unknowns? 

Steve Sonka (speaker)
Emeritus Chaired Professor of Agricultural Strategy
University of Illinois
Champaign, IL 61820
Steve Sonka is Emeritus Chaired Professor of Agricultural Strategy at the University of Illinois. Currently he also serves as Fellow at the Ed Snider Center for Enterprise and Markets at the University of Maryland and Senior Economist at the National Great Rivers Research and Education Center. A co-founder of the Centrec Consulting Group, LLC, in Savoy, Illinois, he was a partner there for more than 25 years. Dr. Sonka's teaching and research emphasize strategic change and decision making in the food and agribusiness sector. In 1983, he authored Computers in Farming, the first text devoted to computer use in the sector. His interest and involvement in the application of information technologies has continued through PC’s, the internet, precision agriculture, Big Data and now digital agriculture. He has authored or coauthored over 220 books, articles and publications. An internationally known scholar, he has been recognized with national professional awards for the quality of both his teaching and research. Dr. Sonka is well known for his unusual ability to relate that scholarship to practical issues of importance to decision makers. His international experiences include consulting and lecturing on every continent except Antarctica.
Length (approx): 60 min