History and evolution

The activities of Postgraduate in Agricultural Engineering at UNICAMP, in Master level, were initiated in the Faculty of Food and Agricultural Engineering (FEAA) in 1978, at the then Department of Agricultural Engineering, in the areas of Agricultural Machineries and Pre-Processing of Agricultural Products. These areas were, at a national level, an innovation in terms of Postgraduate. Seven years later, in 1985, the Faculty of Agricultural Engineering (FEAGRI) was created which, in 1990, obtained the accreditation of the Master's Course and implemented the concentration areas: Water and Soil, Rural Constructions, and Agricultural Planning and Production.

The implementation of a Postgraduate course in Agricultural Engineering was understood as a fundamental measure in the search for solutions to technological engineering problems related to agriculture, which pointed to the need for incorporation of more specialized personnel, since the problems initially treated by professionals of formations in related areas should be assumed by personnel with more specific training.


The need to create the Doctorate Course occurred naturally and gradually. In 1993, activities at the Doctorate level began, consolidating the Postgraduate Program in Agricultural Engineering (PPG-FEAGRI). Currently the Masters and Doctorate courses are recommended by CAPES.

In the mid-1990s, the Postgraduate Commission began the process of restructuring the Postgraduate courses, which involved, in the first stage of the paper, a broad discussion about the Concentration Areas, Research Lines and Themes, seeking the consonance of these to the demand of the productive sector and the training of competitive and skilled professionals to work in the labor market, in areas of interest and community needs. This discussion culminated in the areas of concentration that predominated until the year 2013: Water and Soil, Rural Constructions and Ambience, Agricultural Machineries, Planning and Sustainable Rural Development and Post-Harvest Technologies, all validated by CAPES.

After a reassessment of the activities that had been developed in the area of Planning and Sustainable Rural Development, it was found that these activities had a broader thematic scope, extending to other aspects of management than just planning. Thus, a gradual process of realignment of teachers' actions towards the theme of management began, which culminated with the proposal to change the name of this area of concentration to 'Systems Management in Agriculture and Rural Development', in order to express the changes in the projects and lines of research. The change in the concentration area occurred in 2010, and the processing occurred in 2011 and 2012, with final approval in December 2012, being implemented from 2013.

Concomitantly, in 2013, the  Specialization Course lato sensu "Field Education and Agroecology in Family and Peasant Agriculture - Agrarian Residency" was created and started, with the objective of providing specialized training, mainly to settlers in areas of Agrarian Reform with higher education and graduates of university courses in agricultural sciences, for the development of technical assistance and rural extension activities with an agroecological focus in areas of family farming and agrarian reform. The course has its proposal based on the alternation pedagogy, with effective academic paper activities divided into: school-time', aimed at formative actions and reflection and exchange, seminars and curricular components; and 'community-times', intended for fieldwork in selected regions. The course was supported by CNPq, through the approval of the proposal submitted in the CNPq/MDA-Incra invocation.

In the period from 2013 to 2019, 14 permanent faculty members joined the PPG-FEAGRI, or 48% of the current permanent faculty members. This fact occurred due to the new faculty hirings in FEAGRI under the terms of CONSU 005/2015 Resolution, which allowed the automatic filling of vacancies in the Faculty and Research career at Unicamp due to deaths, resignations and retirements of teachers.


In 2016, in view of this scenario of changes in the teaching staff of FEAGRI, it was necessary to restructure the Course, in which were revised Areas of concentration, Lines and Research Projects and disciplines, implemented from 2017; including the creation of the concentration area Non-Destructive Methods Applied to Materials, Structures and Trees; and subjects such as Academic Writing in English (AP186); Statistics Applied to Agricultural Sciences (AP206); Applied Image Analysis for Agricultural Products and Food (AP210); Ultrasound Applied to Material Characterization: Theoretical Aspects (AP354); and Laboratory Practices for Environmental Research (AP566).

Also in 2016, the FEAGRI Postgraduate Coordinator's Office was facing a crisis due to the loss of three employees, two resigned and one retired. In 2017 there was a change in the Rectory and the new management suspended the Resolution CONSU 005/2015 and set the resources for new hirings. As a result, the PPG-FEAGRI secretariat services were severely compromised.

In 2017, the information for the 2016 Coleta/CAPES was sent, ending the 2013-2016 quadrennium. The Program that until then was grade 5, received grade 4. In the CAPES Evaluation Form, 3 points were observed: insufficient performance of teaching staff in the Undergraduate level, the low productivity rate of the teaching staff and the number of collaborating teachers exceeding the limit of 30% of the teaching staff.

The Coordinator (management 2015-2019) identified an error in the information sent, about the performance of teachers in the Undergraduate Program that harmed the grade of the Program, and sent a request for reconsideration to the CAPES Evaluation Board. Unfortunately, the request for reconsideration was denied by DAV-CAPES and the grade 4 was maintained.

Another fact that led to the fall in the grade of the PPG-FEAGRI was the low productivity index of the teachers, because many were at the beginning of their careers and the teachers with greater scientific maturity were in the retirement phase, slowing down the pace of academic production. In addition, it was verified that the number of collaborating professors was above the acceptable limit by CAPES (30% of the total number of teachers).

In July 2019, there was a change in the management of the PPG-FEAGRI and in August 2019 in the Postgraduate Committee (CPG). One of the first actions of the current management of the PPG-FEAGRI was to review the accreditation status of all faculty members according to the recommendations of the Area Coordination of CAPES. New criteria for accreditation/reaccreditation were established based on publication scores (Internal Standard CPG-FEAGRI 02/2020), according to the Qualis Reference, presented at the Midterm Meeting of the area of Agricultural Sciences I, held on September 02 and 03, 2019.

At the end of the second half of 2019 the updating of the Areas of Concentration, Research Lines and Projects of the Program was carried out, being created the Area of Concentration Digital Agriculture. The advance of Agriculture 4.0, which incorporates automation and connectivity in the field, has been requiring agribusiness professionals to seek suitable qualifications for the design, development and handling of machinery, equipment and systems. The Digital Agriculture Concentration Area will be implemented in 2020. Since the beginning of Postgraduate activities the PPG -FEAGRI has titled 649 masters and 448 PhDs, and in 2019 13 masters and 20 PhDs were titled in Agricultural Engineering.