Dr Kanika Singh

Research Fellow
School of Life and Environmental Sciences

Member of Sydney Institute of Agriculture

C81 - ATP - The Biomedical Building
The University of Sydney

Telephone +61 2 8627 1141
Fax +61 2 8627 1099

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Biographical details

Kanika Singh is currently a Reserach Fellow on an ACIAR funded project (SMCN/2014/048). She earned her Bachelor of Science at Panjab University in India, in 2007, and her PhD in Soil carbon variability and its management at field and regional scale (New South Wales), the University of Sydney in 2013. In her thesis work she investigated spatial variability of soil carbon at regional and field scale and cost effective soil carbon measurement using near infra red technology.

After completing her PhD, Kanika accepted a position as a postdoctoral fellow with Precision Agriculture laboratory, where she worked for 3 years.During that time, she developed and used new instrumentation for performing soil carbon management and measurement.During this period she recieved various collaborative fundings:

1. Extending the value of data (2014): a national workshop on novel analysis for soil and water resources; Singh K, Minasny B, Van Ogtrop F, Vervoort R; Australia India Council/Research Support.

2. Digital Agriculture for Food and Soil Security: Training Agricultural Trade Partners (India) (2016); Minasny B; Whelan B; Singh K; Australia Awards Fellowship.

3. Assessment of soil health using diffuse reflectance spectroscopy in low carbon and highly weathered soils of India and Australia; Singh K; Whelan B; Minasny B; International Program Development Fund – 2015.

In 2017, Kanika accepted a Research fellow position at the University of Sydney, where she has been since that time.She is a research fellow on an ACIAR project at the Sydney Institute of Agriculture, School of Environmental Sciences. She is currently working in Papua New Guinea in collaboration with Cocoa Board of PNG (ACIAR- SMCN/2014/048). She loves soil and is passionate about researching soil and its functions for the continuously developing world and soil.

While on this project, Kanika has continued her work on infra red spectroscopy. This project has evolved its focus in the last two years to address both hard and soft science in a developing country like PNG, where the integration of her contribution to the project resulted in winning the Johan Bouma award for combining soft and hard science at the National Soil conference, 2018, Canberra:

Kanika Singh, Damien Field and Todd SandersonCocoa soil management in Papua New Guinea. 2018. Proceeding of Soils Conference.

Chris Fidelis, David Yiniland Peter Wasika Converting cocoa pod husks into organic fertiliser in Papua New Guinea. 2018. Proceeding of Soils Conference.

Part of Kanika's motivation for working in Papua New Guinea was to explore different soils of the world, plus her interest in working for development Agriculture. Further, Kanika likes chocolate too, and she is enjoying working on something that in general scientific as well as non-scientific community enjoys (Cocoa)- she wrote an article with her collegaues last year over Easter to show some science behind Cocoa conversation- "Sustainable shopping: save the world, one chocolate at a time".

Research interests

Kanika's passion for soil can be traced back to her childhood. She comes from a state called Himachal Pradesh in India where her family owns agricultural land (ancestral). Her father was in the Indian army, therefore he travelled a lot through the years, but one thing Kanika never seems to forget is his love for land (soil). She grew up with a veggie garden in her backyard and saw how her father would enjoy gardening (turmeric, radish, carrot, grapes) and it did not end there- the very sophisticated experiments at home to make wine with plums, grapes or apples. There were always flowers around the house and in the garden too and she saw how her parents sat outside with a cup of tea and admired what they had created- life! Life in the form of flowers and veggies and fruits and they would discuss what can they grow and how and compost etc.

Subconsciously, Kanika grew up with SOIL. Professionally her interest is to work with farmers and understand the knowledge they need to make profit, and maybe contribute towards improved livelihoods. Further, to use readily available scientific techniques to answer few soil related issues and its management. She endeavours to be a team player and believes in being kind towards soil and people.

Outside office, she enjoys studying different languages, especially Middle Eastern and Asian. She is an amateur guitarist and a bathroom singer (brings her joy).

Teaching and supervision

In her present position, she co-suprevised two undergarduate students from PNGUNRE.

Awards and honours

  • Alpha lady of the future award, 2008-2009, Panjab University, India
  • University rank holder
  • University of Sydney World scholar award (2009-present)
  • Henry Bertie and Florence Mabel Gritton Scholarship in Soil chemistry (2010-present)
  • Awarded the soil science gift of the year in 2012
  • Johan Bouma award for Integrating hard and soft science

Themes

Environment; Plant biology and production

Selected grants

2014

  • Extending the value of data: a national workshop on novel analysis for soil and water resources; Singh K, Minasny B, Van Ogtrop F, Vervoort R; Australia India Council/Research Support.

2012

  • Soil Carbon in Commercial Cropping Systems: Science to Best Agronomic Practice; Whelan B, Ampt P, Singh K; Department of Agriculture and Water Resources (Federal)/Carbon Farming Futures Action on the Ground.

Selected publications

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Book Chapters

  • Singh, K., Minasny, B., McBratney, A., Short, M., Namazi, F. (2012). Sampling for field measurement of soil carbon using Vis-NIR spectroscopy. In Budiman Minasny, Brendan P. Malone, Alex B. McBratney (Eds.), Digital Soil Assessments and Beyond, (pp. 415-420). Leiden, The Netherlands: CRC Press. [More Information]

Journals

  • Palmer, J., Thorburn, P., Meier, E., Biggs, J., Whelan, B., Singh, K., Eyre, D. (2017). Can management practices provide greenhouse gas abatement in grain farms in New South Wales, Australia? Crop and Pasture Science, 68(4), 390-400. [More Information]
  • Stockmann, U., Adams, M., Crawford, J., Field, D., Henakaarchchi, N., Jenkins, M., Minasny, B., McBratney, A., De Remy De Courcelles, V., Singh, K., Wheeler, I., et al (2013). The knowns, known unknowns and unknowns of sequestration of soil organic carbon. Agriculture, Ecosystems and Environment, 164, 80-99. [More Information]
  • Singh, K., Murphy, B., Marchant, B. (2012). Towards cost-effective estimation of soil carbon stocks at the field scale. Soil Research, 50(8), 672-684. [More Information]

Conferences

  • Singh, K., Minasny, B., McBratney, A. (2014). Unravelling the Research Gaps in Technology Based Soil Inference Systems. 20th World Congress of Soil Sciences, Jeju, Korea: International Union of Soil Sciences (IUSS).

Report

  • Stockmann, U., Adams, M., Crawford, J., Field, D., Henakaarchchi, N., Jenkins, M., McBratney, A., De Remy De Courcelles, V., Singh, K., Wheeler, I. (2010). Managing the soil plant system to mitigate atmospheric CO2.

2017

  • Palmer, J., Thorburn, P., Meier, E., Biggs, J., Whelan, B., Singh, K., Eyre, D. (2017). Can management practices provide greenhouse gas abatement in grain farms in New South Wales, Australia? Crop and Pasture Science, 68(4), 390-400. [More Information]

2014

  • Singh, K., Minasny, B., McBratney, A. (2014). Unravelling the Research Gaps in Technology Based Soil Inference Systems. 20th World Congress of Soil Sciences, Jeju, Korea: International Union of Soil Sciences (IUSS).

2013

  • Stockmann, U., Adams, M., Crawford, J., Field, D., Henakaarchchi, N., Jenkins, M., Minasny, B., McBratney, A., De Remy De Courcelles, V., Singh, K., Wheeler, I., et al (2013). The knowns, known unknowns and unknowns of sequestration of soil organic carbon. Agriculture, Ecosystems and Environment, 164, 80-99. [More Information]

2012

  • Singh, K., Minasny, B., McBratney, A., Short, M., Namazi, F. (2012). Sampling for field measurement of soil carbon using Vis-NIR spectroscopy. In Budiman Minasny, Brendan P. Malone, Alex B. McBratney (Eds.), Digital Soil Assessments and Beyond, (pp. 415-420). Leiden, The Netherlands: CRC Press. [More Information]
  • Singh, K., Murphy, B., Marchant, B. (2012). Towards cost-effective estimation of soil carbon stocks at the field scale. Soil Research, 50(8), 672-684. [More Information]

2010

  • Stockmann, U., Adams, M., Crawford, J., Field, D., Henakaarchchi, N., Jenkins, M., McBratney, A., De Remy De Courcelles, V., Singh, K., Wheeler, I. (2010). Managing the soil plant system to mitigate atmospheric CO2.

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