Agroecological transitions in different geographic contexts 1: Governance and sustainability

Type: Virtual Paper
Sponsor Groups: Geographies of Food and Agriculture Specialty Group, Human Dimensions of Global Change Specialty Group, Rural Geography Specialty Group
Poster #:
Day: 4/10/2021
Start / End Time: 8:00 AM / 9:15 AM (PDT)
Room: Virtual 12
Organizers: Gerald Schwarz, George Vlahos, Katalin Balázs, Andrea Povellato
Chairs: Gerald Schwarz

Call for Submissions

Please send your abstract (max. 250 words) to Gerald Schwarz ( by November 19, 2020. Presenters of all accepted papers 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 a 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. The dilemma has specific characteristics in different farming systems. Agroecological approaches are increasingly discussed as an alternative to farming based on chemical inputs as a way to address the dilemma. It is acknowledged that farming systems implementing such approaches generally require more knowledge and labour per hectare in comparison to conventional farming, but 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 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 a series of interlinked sessions to examine agroecological transitions and related governance issues. We aim for an interdisciplinary approach bringing together experience and expertise from different geographic contexts. 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 different geographic contexts;
- 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, innovative policy instruments (including result-based and cooperative approaches) and institutional arrangements play in fostering cooperation in agroecological transitions;
- the performance and sustainability of agroecological farming at farm and territorial levels.

Please send your abstract (max. 250 words) to Gerald Schwarz ( by November 19, 2020. Presenters of all accepted papers 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
Presenter Daniel Kpienbaareh*, Western University, Rachel Bezner Kerr, Cornell University, Isaac Luginaah, Western University, Jinfei Wang, Western University, Esther Lupafya, SFHC, Laifolo Dakishoni, SFHC, Lizzie Shumba, SFHC, Spatial and ecological farmer knowledge and decision-making about ecosystem services and biodiversity 15 8:00 AM
Presenter Katalin Balázs*, Geonardo Ltd, Alfréd Szilágyi, Geonardo Ltd., László Podmaniczky, Geonardo Ltd., Initiating agro-ecological transitions: Taking steps toward sustainable resource management to increase economic viability in mid-sized arable grain-protein-oil cropping farms in Hungary 15 8:15 AM
Presenter George Vlahos*, Agricultural University of Athens, Alexandra Smyrniotopoulou, Agricultural University of Athens , Can incremental changes pave the way to sustainability? 15 8:30 AM
Presenter Oriana Gava, CREA - Research Centre for Agricultural Policies and Bioeconomy, Francesco Vanni*, CREA - Research Centre for Agricultural Policies and Bioeconomy, Francesco Galioto, CREA - Research Centre for Agricultural Policies and Bioeconomy, Andrea Povellato, CREA - Research Centre for Agricultural Policies and Bioeconomy, Institutional change towards the diffusion of agroecology in traditional winegrowing areas. The case of Chianti, Italy 15 8:45 AM
Presenter Marina García Llorente*, UAM, Irene Pérez-Ramirez, UAM, Berta Martín Lopez, Leuphana University, SAVIA-Sowing Alternatives for Agro-ecological Innovation 15 9:00 AM

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