Brief Vitae



Dr. Ricardo David Valdez-Cepeda


Education and career:

Ricardo David Valdez-Cepeda graduated from the ‘Universidad Autónoma Agraria Antonio Narro’, Saltillo, Coahuila, Mexico with a B. Sc. degree in Agronomy in May, 26, 1983.
He obtained the degree of Master in Sciences in Business Administration with specialization in Water and Soil Resources from the ‘Centro de Investigación y Graduados’, ‘Instituto Tecnológico Agropecuario No. 10’, Torreón, Coahuila, Mexico in 1989. He also attended to the postgraduate course ‘Agricultural Meteorology’ in Israel, sponsored by the Meteorological Service of Israel and the Ben Gurion University in 1989. He obtained the Ph. D. degree in Agricultural Sciences (Soil Fertility-Plant nutrition and Spatial statistics) from the ‘Facultad de Agronomía’, ‘Universidad Autónoma de Nuevo León’, Marín, N.L., Mexico in 1997.


He was researcher at the Agricultural Experimental Station of Zacatecas, Mexico (1984-1987). He taught edaphology and soil conservation in the ‘Facultad de Agronomía’, ‘Universidad Autónoma de Zacatecas’ (1984-1987), and in the ‘Unidad Regional de Zonas Áridas’, ‘Universidad Autónoma Chapingo’ (1987-1991). Today, Dr. Valdez-Cepeda is Professor at the ‘Centro Regional Universitario del Centro Norte’, ‘Universidad Autónoma Chapingo’ located in Zacatecas, Mexico. He is also coordinator of the Working Group on Production of Nopalitos of the FAO-Cactus International Technical Cooperation Network.

Dr. Valdez-Cepeda is author or co-author of 70 original research articles published in refereed journals. He is also author or co-author of 102 refereed articles published in Proceedings of Congresses and National and International Symposia. He have edited 10 books and published 33 book chapters. He have authored or co-authored 16 Technical Reports developed by contract; these Technical Reports provide recommendations and specific and concrete alternatives for the sound management of natural resources and/or to mitigate the negative effects of human activities on the environment.




He is in charge of ‘Research Methods 3’ unit taught in the ‘Centro Regional Universitario Centro Norte’, ‘Universidad Autónoma Chapingo’. He is also in charge of research methods courses in the ‘Facultad de Matemáticas’, and lectures Biometry in the ‘Facultad de Biología’, ‘Universidad Autónoma de Zacatecas’.


Research interests:

His research has been limited to agriculture in arid zones and agricultural meteorology. He developed a numerical classification system for Opuntia spp. involving fractal geometry. He is currently working on development of standards (nutrient norms) for plant nutrition in crops such as peach, corn, chili, and Opuntia ficus-indica.


From the perspective of the theory of complex systems, he have demonstrated the relationships between El Niño Southern Oscillation or the Quasi-biennial Oscillation and mean yields of maize, beans, wheat, and rice. Now this area of interest is taking into account rainfall, evaporation and extreme temperatures recorded in various localities and agricultural regions of the Mexican territory.


Dr. Valdez-Cepeda is also carrying out research work on ecology of Agave salmiana, A. lecheguilla,  Dasilirion cedrosanum, and Opuntia spp. wild populations, and on bioremediation of heavy metal-contaminated soils.

Recognitions and awards:

1. Recognition for being the ‘First Graduated Alumni from the Ph. D. Program’.
‘Facultad de Agronomía, Universidad Autónoma de Nuevo León. Marín, N. L., Mexico. Dec. 6, 2002.

2. Award for having achieved the ‘Highest score at the national level in the Program: Design of Projects for Rural Development’. SAGARPA and INCA-Rural. 2001. Mexico, D.F.

3. Recognition for his’ contributions to scientific and technological development. Government of the State of Zacatecas. 2004. Zacatecas, Zac., Mexico.

4. Recognition as Member of the Mexico’s National System of Researchers from July 1, 1990. Beginning January 1, 2008, recognized as National Investigator, Level 3.


Recent refereed publications:


  1. García-Hernández, J.L., R.D. Valdez-Cepeda, B. Murillo-Amador, F.A. Beltrán-Morales, F.H. Ruiz-Espinoza, I. Orona-Castillo, A. Flores-Hernández and E. Troyo-Diéguez. 2006. Preliminary compositional nutrient diagnosis norms in Aloe vera L. grown on calcareous soil in an arid environment. Environmental & Experimental Botany 58: 244-252.
  2. Magallanes-Quintanar, R., R.D. Valdez-Cepeda, E. Olivares-Sáenz, O. Pérez-Veyna and J.L. García-Hernández. 2006. Compositional nutrient diagnosis in maize grown on calcareous soils. Journal of Plant Nutrition 29: 2019-2033.
  3. Rodríguez-Ortíz, J.C., R.D. Valdez-Cepeda, J.L. Lara-Mireles, H. Rodríguez-Fuentes, R.E. Vázquez-Alvarado, R. Magallanes-Quintanar and J.L. García-Hernández. 2006. Soil nitrogen fertilization effects on phytoextraction of Cd and Pb by tobacco (Nicotiana tabacum L.). Bioremediation Journal 10(3): 105-114.
  4. Blanco-Macías, F., A. Lara-Herrera, R.D. Valdez-Cepeda, J.O. Cortés-Bañuelos, M. Luna-Flores y M.A. Salas-Luévano. 2006. Interacciones nutrimentales y normas de la técnica de nutrimento compuesto en nopal (Opuntia ficus-indica L. Miller). Revista Chapingo, Serie Horticultura 12(2): 165-175.
  5. Martínez-Salvador, M., L. Beltrán-Morales, R. Valdez-Cepeda, E. Troyo-Diéguez, B. Murillo-Amador, J. Jiménez-Galindo and A. Ortega-Rubio. 2007. Assessment of sustainability performance on the utilization of agave (Agave salmiana ssp crassispina) in Zacatecas, Mexico. International Journal of Sustainable Development & World Ecology 14(4): 362–3711.
  6. García-Hernández, J.L., R.D. Valdez-Cepeda, R. Servín-Villegas, E. Troyo-Diéguez, B. Murillo-Amador, E.O. Rueda-Puente, J.C. Rodríguez-Ortiz, R. Magallanes-Quintanar. 2007. Interacciones nutrimentales y normas de diagnóstico de nutrimento compuesto en un cultivar semidomesticado de Capsicum frutescens. Revista Chapingo, Serie Horticultura 13(2): 133-140.
  7. Valdez-Cepeda, R.D., O. Delgadillo Ruiz, R. Magallanes-Quintanar, G. Miramontes de León, J.L. García-Hernández, A. Enciso-Muñoz and B. Mendoza. 2007. Scale-invariance of normalized yearly mean grain yield anomaly series. Advances in Complex Systems 10(3): 395-412.
  8. Ruiz-Fernández, E.J., R.D. Valdez-Cepeda, L. Pérez-Romero, D. Rodríguez-Tenorio, and R. Magallanes-Quintanar. 2007. Strategies for re-vegetation of degraded arid rangelands in Zacatecas, México. International Journal of Agriculture and Biology 9(6): 857-862.