Dr. Chapagain is a cropping systems agronomist and international development professional whose career goal is to help farmers in Canada and developing nations find appropriate solutions to meet their agroecological needs. He joined this department as a Research Associate and Senior Agronomist for an IDRC (International Research Development Centre) funded project ($2.3 million) involving the testing and promotion of novel agronomic strategies and a precision agriculture tool. He is also involved in a long-term project that compares different cover crop strategies, either in a corn-soybean or a corn-soybean-wheat rotation under plow-till and strip-till systems, in terms of nutrient cycling (N, P, C), drought resiliency, yield, and quality of major cash crops in Ontario.
Dr. Chapagain received his B.Sc. and M.Sc. degrees in Agriculture from Nepal. He was awarded the prestigious Chancellor's Gold Medal at Tribhuvan University for having stood first in the final examination of the Master’s degree of 2005. Subsequently, he received his first PhD in International Agriculture from the University of Tokyo (2010) and a second PhD in Plant Science (Crop Agronomy) from the University of British Columbia (2014). He also worked as a post-doctoral research fellow (field agronomist) for over 18 months at the University of Alberta, where he studied production gaps and nitrogen use efficiency in rainfed wheat, barley, and canola in Alberta with funding support from the Alberta Crop Industry Development Fund (ACIDF) and Alberta Livestock and Meat Agency (ALMA). Beyond agronomic research, he has worked in varying extension capacities at I/NGOs, universities, industry- and government-affiliated organizations as a team leader, project coordinator, instructor, and subject matter specialist.
Dr. Chapagain has led several research and extension projects in Canada, Japan, and Nepal. These projects aimed to design innovative practices using agro-ecological approaches for field crop production and soil management with an emphasis on developing adaptive measures to climate change. His research and extension interests include development and dissemination of science-based solutions with a focus on growth, competitiveness, sustainability, and adaptability of the Canadian agrifood sector by: 1) optimizing nitrogen requirements of major field crops grown in Canada and developing nations using the 4R principles; 2) designing low cost and sustainable agro-ecosystems that reduce the use of synthetic fertilizers in crop production, replacing them with more natural, biological resources; and 3) providing tools and practices that sustain ecosystem services, input efficiency and environmental quality, while adapting to climatic extremes. His general areas of interests include cropping systems and agronomy, semi-arid and dryland agroecology, integrated soil and nutrient management, carbon sequestration, intercrop interactions, nitrogen use efficiency, water productivity, root physiology, biotic and abiotic stress resistance, and edaphic selection.
Chapagain, T. 2016. Monoculture and Intercropping: Land and Ecosystem Productivity, Nitrogen Transformations and Water Use Efficiency in Low Input Organic System. LAP LAMBERT Academic Publishing, Germany (ISBN: 978-3-659-94767-4).
Thilakarathna, M. S., M. McElroy, T. Chapagain, Y. A. Papadopoulos and M. N. Raizada, 2016. Belowground nitrogen transfer from legumes to non-legumes under managed herbaceous cropping systems: A review. Agronomy for Sustainable Development 36 (4): 58.
Chapagain, T. and A. Good, 2015. Yield and Production Gaps in Rainfed Wheat, Barley, and Canola in Alberta. Frontiers in Plant Science 6: 990. DOI: 10.3389/fpls.2015.00990.
Chapagain, T. and A. Riseman, 2015. Nitrogen and Carbon Transformations, Water Use Efficiency and Ecosystem Productivity in Monocultures and Wheat-Bean Intercropping Systems. Nutrient Cycling in Agroecosystems 101 (1): 107-121.
Chapagain, T. and A. Riseman. 2014. Barley-Pea Intercropping: Effects on Land Productivity, Carbon and Nitrogen Transformations. Field Crops Research 166: 18-25.
Chapagain, T. and A. Riseman. 2014. Intercropping Wheat and Beans: Effects on Agronomic Performance and Land Productivity. Crop Science 54 (5): 2285-2293.
Chapagain, T., L. Super and A. Riseman. 2014. Root Architecture Variation in Wheat and Barley Cultivars. American Journal of Experimental Agriculture 4 (7): 849-856.
Chapagain, T. and A. Riseman, 2012. Evaluation of Heirloom and Commercial Cultivars of Small Grains under Low Input Organic Systems. American Journal of Plant Sciences 3 (5): 655-669.
Chapagain, T., A. Riseman and E. Yamaji. 2011. Assessment of System of Rice Intensification (SRI) and Conventional Practices under Organic and Inorganic Management in Japan. Rice Science 18 (4): 311-320.
Chapagain, T., A. Riseman and E. Yamaji. 2011. Achieving More with Less Water: Alternate Wet and Dry Irrigation (AWDI) as an Alternative to the Conventional Water Management Practices in Rice Farming. Journal of Agricultural Science 3 (3): 3-13.
Chapagain, T. and G. B. Gurung. 2010. Effects of Integrated Plant Nutrition Management (IPNM) practices on the sustainability of Maize-based hill farming systems in Nepal. Journal of Agricultural Science 2 (3): 26-32.
Chapagain, T. and E. Yamaji. 2010. The effects of irrigation methods, age of seedlings and spacing on crop performance, productivity and water-wise production of rice in Japan. Paddy and Water Environment 8 (1): 81-90.
Panta, S. S. and T. Chapagain. 2005. Influence of the planting depth on growth and cut flower production of Gladiolus (Gladiolus hybrida Hort.) cv. American Beauty under Chitwan condition. Floriculture Association of Nepal, Special Edition for Floriculture Trade Fair-2005: 31-34.