How will the International Turfgrass Research Initiative advance sustainable turf management?

By: May 23, 2024

I consider all endeavors and measures to foster sustainability and environmental friendliness in golf positive. The International Turfgrass Research Initiative is no exception.

The Scandinavian Turfgrass and Environment Research Foundation (STERF), The R&A, and the United States Golf Association (USGA) have launched the International Turfgrass Research Initiative.

The initiative aims further to advance sustainable approaches to golf course and turfgrass management.

International Turfgrass Research Initiative

The International Turfgrass Research Initiative is a legacy of the 14th International Turfgrass Research Conference (ITRC) hosted by STERF in collaboration with the International Turfgrass Society (ITS) in Copenhagen, Denmark, in 2022.

Development and sustainability were the themes of the conference and STERF and ITS agreed that investing in international turfgrass research would be the most appropriate legacy from ITRC 2022.

Beginning later this year, multi-year research projects will be funded to develop practical solutions that can be adopted by those managing golf facilities and turfgrass areas in response to the most pressing challenges facing the management of turfgrass and golf courses worldwide, including 

  • pest control,
  • water conservation,
  • preserving biodiversity and landscapes, and
  • understanding the climate impact on turfgrass and golf landscapes.

A call for research proposals will be issued in May, and submissions will be reviewed by a group of researchers, practitioners, and experts in golf course and turfgrass management.

The successful applicants will be announced at the 15th International Turfgrass Research Conference being held in Japan next year.

The International Turfgrass Research Initiative complements existing support already provided by each organization in using scientific research to inform practical solutions, such as 

Maria Strandberg, STERF Director and Past President of the International Turfgrass Society, said

“We want to support and inspire scientists all over the world to collaborate and create and supply new knowledge and tools that are essential for modern and sustainable golf course and turfgrass management – knowledge that is of practical benefit and ready for use.”