You are here: Home

Broadening scopes on food, squeezing urban hinterlands

Transdisciplinarity: what does it mean? Cases studies in urban and periurban agriculture

The day will focus on the combined themes of transdisciplinary methodologies (broadening scopes on food) and urban and periurban agricultures (UPA) (squeezing urban hinterlands).

Picture 4So far, we have spent much energy describing both the inherent unsustainability of our current global food system and alternatives for the dominant model of debt-driven industrial agriculture.

Yet when it comes to translating the necessary transition to strong sustainability on the ground, we cope with messy farming realities, short-term constraints, lock-ins at different levels of decision making, learning gaps and communication problems of all sorts, even conflicts and discrimination issues. We thus call for communications telling stories of putting agroecology in action through participatory research setups.

We are looking for contributions showing that transdisciplinary research can yield both tangible changes on the ground as well as fresh analytical frameworks that can be put to use in a variety of contexts. The context we favour for this BAM edition is the surge of mini- and micro-farms around cities.

These farms mostly work along agroecological principles and actively look for linking cities with their hinterland. Yet they share this hinterland with a majority of conventional farms trapped in the rat race of “Enlarge or Perish”. We especially welcome contributions tackling both methodological issues AND the economics of APU.

The day will kick off with a common keynote by rural sociologist Jan Douwe van der Ploeg (Wageningen University, The Netherlands), a pioneer when it comes to analysing and defending a world peasant farming model that makes the most of ecological, social and human capital. His keynote will be followed by two theme-oriented keynotes introducing each one parallel session.

Since the objective of this day is to offer a meeting place for young researchers, we encourage both Master’s students to come and present relevant work and early PhD-students to come and discuss their research questions and setup. Besides students, we reserve space for knowledge brokers and practitioners who want to share an experience and tell their story in a scientific format.

This third Belgian Agroecology Meeting will take place at an eminently urban school of bioengineering, at the ULB, Brussels and is co-organised by the ULB and the Université de Namur.