Managing soil quality: Challenges in modern agriculture

Sojka, R.E. and Sanchez, P. (2004) Managing soil quality: Challenges in modern agriculture. Soil Science. 169(12):884-886.


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The editors of this book, P. Schjonning, S. Elmholt, and B.T. Christensen, have succeeded in compiling perhaps the most focused technically based book on soil quality published to date. The chapters they have brought together are predominately the work of European, Australian, and Canadian authors who, to a greater degree than in previous texts, have taken a data-based analytical approach to concept demonstration and testing. This is refreshing for a topic that has been largely dominated in the American literature by philosophical semantics and institutional proselytizing, more often than not in the absence of specific data collected or applied to the proposed conceptual framework. Even the nonempirical opening and closing chapters by Schjonning et al., which are intentionally philosophical, consider some new conceptual refinements and are at least somewhat open to the possibility that critiques of the soil quality concept offered to date have merit worth pondering. Nevertheless, as one of us communicated to Per Schjonning during the preparation of the book, we feel an opportunity was missed by failing to include more objective assessments of the concept directly from concept-skeptics. Although a few chapters cite the existence of concept criticisms superficially, none deal substantively with any of the twenty or more specific technical reservations about the soil quality concept that have been specifically and repeatedly articulated in several high-profile critiques in the literature. Fewer than ten sentences in Schjonning et al.'s book deal with these specific reservations, and none substantively.

Item Type: Article
NWISRL Publication Number: 1145
Subjects: Soil > Soil quality
Mass Import - autoclassified (may be erroneous)
Depositing User: Dan Stieneke
Date Deposited: 20 Nov 2010 21:49
Last Modified: 03 Nov 2016 15:59
Item ID: 7

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