The Artificial Intelligence in Agriculture research group from the Departments of Computer Science & Informatics and Horticulture and Crop Production, UENR, has been awarded a grant worth Forty-Nine Thousand ($49,000.00) USD by the African Technology Policy Studies Network (ATPS).
The fund is to support the group for a duration of 18 months to develop an Artificial Intelligence application for mobile and the web to detect plant pests/diseases.
The group, led by the Principal Investigator; Dr. Patrick Kwabena Mensah, and accompanied by the Head of Department for Computer Science & Informatics, officially called on the Vice-Chancellor on Tuesday, September 20, 2022 to present the award.
Dr. Patrick Kwabena Mensah, on behalf of the group, informed the Vice-Chancellor and the Ag. Pro Vice-Chancellor that the group will develop the application for four (4) major crops (cassava, maize, tomato, and cashew) in Ghana. The AI mobile/web app will be deployed in the Bono, Bono East, Ahafo, and Savannah Regions after 500 farmers have been trained to use it. He also made known that the project has an opportunity to take on board three (3) plant virologists/pathologists and two (2) Agric extension Officers whose expertise will be vital for the success of the project. According to him, the Ghana Developing Communities Association; an NGO, and DIGILECT SYSTEM are partner institutions.
The Vice-Chancellor, Professor Elvis Asare-Bediako expressed his happiness and appreciation to the group for their initiative. He expressed his unflinching support towards the implementation of the project. He also made known his interest to support the team to scale the project up to cover other plants as well as other conditions that hamper plant growth. As a plant virologist, he promised to offer his expertise at any point during the course of the project.
On his part, Professor John Kuwornu, Acting Pro Vice-Chancellor, commended the group and asked them to explore more research areas that could lead to winning more grants.
The Head of Computer Science & Informatics, Dr. Peter Appiahene, seized the opportunity to thank the Vice-Chancellor and the University management for their support and goodwill.
Other members of the group include Dr. Owusu Nyarko-Boateng, Dr. Samuel Boateng, Dr. Esther Fobi Donkor, Dr. Kwabena Adu, Mr. Nicodemus Songose Awarayi, Ms Mighty Abra Ayidzoe, Ms Faiza Umar Bawah, Mr. Peter Nimbe, Ms. Vivian Akoto-Adjepong, Dr. Isaac Kofi Nti, Mr. Suweidu Abdulai, and Mr. Francis Ata Amponsah.