Agroecological Transitions in a Transatlantic Context (3): Concepts, typologies, barriers, drivers and sustainability performance

Type: Guided Poster
Sponsor Groups: Rural Geography Specialty Group, Geographies of Food and Agriculture Specialty Group, Water Resources Specialty Group
Poster #:
Day: 4/6/2019
Start / End Time: 1:10 PM / 2:50 PM (Eastern Standard Time)
Room: Roosevelt 3.5, Marriott, Exhibition Level
Organizers: Gerald Schwarz, Francesco Vanni, Katalin Balázs
Chairs: Gerald Schwarz

Call for Submissions

Please send your abstract (max. 250 words) to Gerald Schwarz ( by January 25, 2019. Presenters of all accepted posters will then need to send their pin to the organizer.


Despite significant effort in Europe and North America, the provision of public goods together with private goods is still not in balance and frequently not sustainable on farm or farm systems level. The key dilemma is how to produce sufficient amount of public goods while having viable production of private goods securing economic and social sustainability at farm level, which is not too dependent on public funds. This dilemma has specific characteristics in different farming systems. Agroecological approaches are increasingly discussed as an alternative to farming based on chemical inputs to address this dilemma. While it is acknowledged that farming systems implementing such approaches generally require more knowledge and labour per hectare in comparison to conventional farming, there is a need for a better understanding of the socio-economic and policy factors that hinder or enhance transitions towards agroecological farming.

Implementing agroecological transitions requires a wider systems perspective of interconnected processes and organisational levels in social-ecological systems, considering socio-economic, ecological and political settings at a territorial level beyond the farm-level. (Duru et al. 2015). More research is needed to enhance the understanding of socio-economic and policy drivers and barriers for further development and implementation of agroecological approaches in European and North American farming systems to identify and facilitate transition processes towards sustainable agriculture and food systems. Three major domains must to be considered for the transition to take place: adaptation of agricultural practices; conservation of biodiversity and natural resources; and development of embedded food systems (Wezel et al., 2016).

Our objective is to host three separate but interlinked sessions (two paper and one guided poster session) in order to examine agroecological transitions and we aim for an interdisciplinary approach bringing together experience and expertise from Europe and North America. We welcome conceptual, theoretical and empirical contributions that explore (but are not limited to):
- the strengths and weaknesses of different concepts and typologies that have been applied in the analysis of agroecological transitions in the EU and North America;
- contributions theoretical frameworks such as socio-ecological systems, socio-technological systems and political ecology can provide to the discourse and analysis of agroecological farming;
- barriers and drivers of the engagement of farmers’ and other actors of the value chain in agroecological farming and food production;
- the ways in which different collective actions and efforts support or hinder agroecological transition;
- the roles that market incentives, policy instruments and institutional arrangements play in fostering cooperation in agroecological transitions; or
- the performance and sustainability of agroecological farming at farm & territorial levels.

Please send your abstract (max. 250 words) to Gerald Schwarz ( by January 25, 2019. Presenters of all accepted posters will then need to send their pin to the organizer.

Duru, M., O. Therond & M. Fares (2015) Designing agroecological transitions; A review. Agronomy for Sustainable Development, 35, 1237-1257.
Wezel, A., Brives, H., Casagrande, M., Clément, C., Dufour, A. and Vandenbroucke, P. (2016) Agroecology territories: places for sustainable agricultural and food systems and biodiversity conservation, Agroecology and Sustainable Food Systems, 40:2, 132-144.


Type Details Minutes Start Time
Introduction Gerald Schwarz Thuenen Institute 10 1:10 PM
Presenter Tyneshia Griffin*, Department of Geography, Virginia Tech, Kim Niewolny, Associate Professor, Department of Agricultural, Leadership, and Community Education, Virginia Tech, The Concept of Farm Cooperatives in Agroecology: The Case of Cuba and Food System Sustainability in Transition 10 1:20 PM
Presenter Melissa Hinten*, University of Tennessee, Remnant Hay Meadows in a Fragmented North American Tallgrass Prairie Landscape 10 1:30 PM
Presenter Katalin Balázs*, Geonardo Ltd, Rozália Pecze, Syngenta Ltd, László Podmaniczky, Geonardo Ltd, Péter Tóth, Geonardo Ltd, Perspectives of soil conservation farming in promoting agro-ecological considerations - a case study in Hungary 10 1:40 PM
Presenter Gerald Schwarz, Thuenen Institute, Johannes Carolus, Thuenen Institute, Juern Sanders, Thuenen Institute, Jaroslav Prazan, Institute of Agricultural Economics and Information, Alexandra Smyrniotopoulou*, Agricultural University of Athens, Barriers and drivers of agroecological transitions in intensive agricultural areas – a case study from Germany 10 1:50 PM
Presenter Rocio R Duchesne*, University of Wisconsin - Whitewater, Vulnerability of groundwater to nitrate pollution in Walworth County, Wisconsin 10 2:00 PM
Presenter George Vlahos*, Agricultural University of Athens, Evdokia-Dimitra Tsakalou, Agricultural University of Athens, Paolo Prosperi, University of Pisa- Department of Agriculture, Food and Environment , James Kirwan, HNEE University for Sustainable Development, Eberswalde, Erik Mathijs, KU Leuven - Division of Bioeconomics, Market oriented measures for the sustainable management of fisheries in Kavala, Northern Greece. 10 2:10 PM
Presenter Kate Irvine*, James Hutton Institute, A Multi-Actor Framework for Agro-Ecological Farming Systems in the European Union 10 2:20 PM
Presenter Daniel Foley*, Northern Arizona University, A geospatial meta-analysis of global crop water productivity of three leading world crops (wheat, corn, rice) over three decades 10 2:30 PM
Discussant Francesco Vanni CREA - Research Centre for Agricultural Policies and Bioeconomy 10 2:40 PM

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