Urban agriculture (UA), for many activists and scholars, plays a prominent role in food justice struggles in cities throughout the Global North, a site of conflict between use and exchange values and rallying point for progressive claims to the right to the city. Recent critiques, however, warn of its contribution to gentrification and displacement. With the use–exchange value binary no longer as useful an analytic as it once was, geographers need to better understand UA's contradictory relations to capital, particularly in the neoliberal sustainable city. To this end, I bring together feminist theorizations of social reproduction, Bourdieu's “species of capital” and critical geographies of race to help demystify UA's entanglement in processes of ecogentrification. In this primarily theoretical contribution, I argue that concrete labor embedded in household-scale UA—a socially reproductive practice—becomes cultural capital that a sustainable city's growth coalition in turn valorizes as symbolic sustainability capital used to extract rent and burnish the city's brand at larger scales. The valorization of UA occurs, by necessity, in a variegated manner; spatial agglomerations of UA and the ecohabitus required for its misrecognition as sustainability capital arise as a function of the interplay between rent gaps and racialized othering. I assert that ecogentrification is not only a contradiction emerging from an urban sustainability fix but is central to how racial capitalism functions through green urbanization. Like its contribution to ecogentrification, I conclude, UA's emancipatory potential is also spatially variegated.
Urban migrant women worldwide utilize a creative combination of food insecurity coping strategies to procure food for themselves and their families. Using in-depth interviews with 72 migrant women in Medellín, Colombia, and Washington, DC, this paper argues that in low-income urban communities these everyday strategies can further their demands for autonomy in determining what foods they produce and consume. Relying on feminist geography and food sovereignty literature, this research explores how migrant women living in poverty rely on informal networks for growing and sharing food, seek out organic, fresh foods, and utilize independent survival strategies to counter exclusionary rhetoric and a food system they view as unhealthy. In doing so, they devise alternative urban imaginaries of a more democratic food system. This research contributes a more nuanced understanding of the food insecurity experiences of urban migrant women.
L’intégration de l’agriculture dans la ville n’apparaît pas comme une évidence juridique. Au contraire, la ville est habituellement considérée comme l’ennemi de l’agriculture : elle s’étale, elle morcelle les terres agricoles et met en danger l’agriculture périurbaine. Un véritable arsenal juridique s’adresse, non sans raison, à l’agriculture tant dans ses dimensions spatiales que dans ses pratiques, mais l’exercice de cette activité en milieu dense urbain se révèle très largement ignoré par le droit. Pourtant, l’agriculture en milieu dense urbain s’impose peu à peu, tant dans les concepts que dans les faits, et ce phénomène dont les manifestations se multiplient, appelle à un renouveau des fondements ruralistes du droit de l’agriculture, sinon à la reconnaissance juridique de l’agriculture urbaine en tant que telle.
This article examines one example of radical innovation and everyday design through a case study of Farm School NYC, an adult education programme in New York City that uses critical pedagogy and popular education to train adult students in urban farming, social justice advocacy and teaching skills. Drawing primarily from research conducted between 2013 and 2014 for a study on urban agriculture and social justice activism, the article illustrates how a network of urban agriculture practitioners, educators and activists created a community-based training programme that takes steps towards a broad vision of a socially just urban food system and that this represents a case of everyday design by radical innovation. It argues that understanding ways in which projects like Farm School NYC infuse radical visions of social change into their day-to-day educational activities is useful for those inter-ested in supporting such transformative work through teaching, farming and gardening and design.
"We draw on a multidisciplinary body of research to consider how planning for urban agriculture can foster food justice by benefitting socioeconomically disadvantaged residents. The potential social benefits of urban agriculture include increased access to food, positive health impacts, skill building, community development, and connections to broader social change efforts. The literature suggests, however, caution in automatically conflating urban agriculture’s social benefits with the goals of food justice. Urban agriculture may reinforce and deepen societal inequities by benefitting better resourced organizations and the propertied class and contributing to the displacement of lower-income households. The precariousness of land access for urban agriculture is another limitation, particularly for disadvantaged communities. Planners have recently begun to pay increased attention to urban agriculture but should more explicitly support the goals of food justice in their urban agriculture policies and programs."
"Civic agriculture is an approach to agriculture and food production that—in contrast with the industrial food system—is embedded in local environmental, social, and economic contexts. Alongside proliferation of the alternative food projects that characterize civic agriculture, growing literature critiques how their implementation runs counter to the ideal of civic agriculture. This study assesses the relevance of three such critiques to urban farming, aiming to understand how different farming models balance civic and economic exchange, prioritize food justice, and create socially inclusive spaces. Using a case study approach that incorporated interviews, participant observation, and document review, I compare two urban farms in Baltimore, Maryland—a “community farm” that emphasizes community engagement, and a “commercial farm” that focuses on job creation. Findings reveal the community farm prioritizes civic participation and food access for low-income residents, and strives to create socially inclusive space. However, the farmers’ “outsider” status challenges community engagement efforts. The commercial farm focuses on financial sustainability rather than participatory processes or food equity, reflecting the use of food production as a means toward community development rather than propagation of a food citizenry. Both farms meet authentic needs that contribute to neighborhood improvement, though findings suggest a lack of interest by residents in obtaining urban farm food, raising concerns about its appeal and accessibility to diverse consumers. Though not equally participatory, equitable, or social inclusive, both farms exemplify projects physically and philosophically rooted in the local social context, necessary characteristics for promoting civic engagement with the food system."
École d’été sur l’agriculture urbaine de Montréal : 9 années de formation, de réseautage, et d'intervention. Plus de 1600 participantes et participants qui maintenant font la ville nourricière de demain. Pour une 9e édition, du 14 au 18 août 2017, se tiendra à l'Université du Québec à Montréal, l’École d’été sur l’agriculture urbaine du Laboratoire d'agriculture urbaine (AU/LAB) organisée avec la collaboration de l’Institut des sciences de l’environnement de l’UQÀM (ISE). Un rendez-vous devenu incontournable aussi bien au Québec qu’à l’international qui attire chaque année plus de 200 participant(e)s dans un heureux mélange de complicité, d’échanges, de connaissances et d’appel à l’action. Rassemblant des citoyen(ne)s, des chercheur(e)s, des étudiant(e)s, des entrepreneur(e)s, des acteur(trice)s de l’agriculture urbaine et des professionnel(le)s de divers horizons, cette école d’été a pour vocation de susciter des débats, des rencontres et un partage d’expériences. Cette année, nous explorerons le rôle de l'agriculture urbaine comme outil de réappropriation de la ville et plus particulièrement sur les questions d’espace et d’alimentation. Force est de constater qu’au cours des dernières décennies, les processus d’urbanisation ont éloigné l’urbain de son territoire et de son alimentation, les deux étant intimement liés. L’urbain a donc, dans bien des cas, aucun accès à la terre se limitant ainsi à l’offre commerciale présente à proximité de sa résidence pour s’alimenter. Comment redonner cet accès à la « terre »? Comment redonner le pouvoir aux urbains de se nourrir par eux-mêmes? L’agriculture urbaine apparait depuis quelques années comme un outil pertinent de réappropriation individuelle et collective du territoire et de l’alimentation allant même jusqu’à la création d’entreprise dans le domaine. Mais comment les jardinier(e)s urbain(e)s s’y prennent-ils? Est-ce que cette « appropriation » de l’espace à des fins agricoles rentre en conflit avec d’autres usages? Comment des groupes utilisent-ils l'agriculture urbaine pour des actions tactiques de rénovation urbaine ? Quelle place pour l’agriculture en ville considérant les autres fonctions de la ville, dont l’habitation et la culture? Comment créer une mixité de ces usages? Cette année encore, la formation s’organisera autour d’un apprentissage théorique et pratique qui s’appuiera sur l’intervention de spécialistes autour de tables rondes, de retour d’expérience, d’ateliers pratiques et de visites sur le terrain. Une place importante sera aussi accordée aux échanges et discussions, ainsi qu’aux interactions entre les intervenant(e)s et les participant(e)s. Nous espérons que vous trouverez durant cette 9e École d'été des connaissances et de l’inspiration pour poursuivre ou initier des projets en agriculture urbaine, chez vous, à votre travail, dans les écoles, dans votre quartier ou qui sait, démarrer votre propre entreprise agricole urbaine! 1 FORMATION, 3 VOLETS Pour cette 9e édition, l'équipe de l'école d'été offre 3 volets de formation. Le choix d’un volet permettra de diviser le groupe pour les journées du mardi, mercredi et jeudi; les journées du lundi et vendredi étant en tronc commun général.
Le colloque international « Agricultures urbaines durables » propose six sessions scientifiques, chacune avec des sous-sessions et des tables rondes avec les différents acteurs (agriculteurs, chercheurs, élus, étudiants, associations, consultants). Le colloque vise une valorisation scientifique et pédagogique multi-supports.
Rooftop agriculture (RA) is an innovative form of urban agriculture that takes advantage of unused urban spaces while promoting local food production. However, the implementation of RA projects is limited due to stakeholders’ perceived risks. Such risks should be addressed and minimized in policymaking processes to ensure the sustainable deployment of RA initiatives. This paper evaluates the risks that stakeholders perceive in RA and compares these perceptions with the currently available knowledge, including scientific literature, practices and market trends. Qualitative interviews with 56 stakeholders from Berlin and Barcelona were analyzed for this purpose. The results show that perceived risks can be grouped into five main categories: i) risks associated with urban integration (e.g., conflicts with images of “agriculture”), ii) risks associated with the production system (e.g., gentrification potential), iii) risks associated with food products (e.g., soil-less growing techniques are “unnatural”), iv) environmental risks (e.g., limited organic certification) and v) economic risks (e.g., competition with other rooftop uses). These risks are primarily related to a lack of (scientific) knowledge, insufficient communication and non-integrative policymaking. We offer recommendations for efficient project design and policymaking processes. In particular, demonstration and dissemination activities as well as participatory policymaking can narrow the communication gap between RA developers and citizens.
In recent years, urban agriculture has been asserting its relevance as part of a vibrant and diverse food system due to its small scale, its focus on nutrition, its contribution to food security, its employment opportunities, and its role in community building and social mobility. Urban agriculture may also be a tool to re-appropriate a range of abandoned or unused irregular spaces within the city, including flowerbeds, roundabouts, terraces, balconies and rooftops. Consistently, all spaces that present a lack of identity may be converted to urban agriculture areas and, more specifically, to urban horticulture as a way to strengthen resilience and sustainability. The goal of this paper is to analyse current practices in the requalification of vacant areas as urban gardens with the aim of building communities and improving landscapes and life quality. To do so, the city of Bologna (Italy) was used as a case study. Four types of vacant areas were identified as places for implementing urban gardens: flowerbeds along streets and squares, balconies and rooftops, abandoned buildings and abandoned neighbourhoods. Six case studies representing this variety of vacant areas were identified and evaluated by collecting primary data (i.e., field work, participant observations and interviews) and performing a SWOT analysis. For most cases, urban horticulture improved the image and quality of the areas as well as bringing numerous social benefits in terms of life quality, food access and social interaction among participants. Strong differences in some aspects were found between top-down and bottom-up initiatives, being the later preferable for the engagement of citizens. Policy-making might focus on participatory and transparent planning, long-term actions, food safety and economic development.
The IMPACT FARM is a preview of the future of food production. It is a urban pop-up farm with a complete hydroponic growing system that is both productive and eco-effective, resulting in 2-4 tonnes of leafy greens and fruiting vegetables year round using solar energy. In addition it uses 75% less water as from conventional agriculture. The farm is designed as a two story timber greenhouse build around an refurbished 20 ́ shipping container.
How can buildings be combined with agricultural production and what are the major potential benefits and challenges for the introduction of zero-acreage farming (ZFarming) in Berlin from the relevant stakeholders’ perspectives? These questions were explored through a series of interviews and stakeholder workshops held between 2011 and 2013. The aim was to identify the most suitable building-integrated farming model for the Berlin metropolitan area and to develop guidelines for the model’s successful and sustainable implementation through a stakeholder-driven approach. This paper provides an aggregated synthesis of the outcomes derived from the qualitative interviews and stakeholder workshops. As the results reveal, the stakeholders perceive potential benefits and challenges related to the issue of ZFarming in all dimensions (economic, social, environmental and political). They largely agreed on the importance of focusing on local resources, using energy-efficient production—including social and educational aspects—and developing new market structures when introducing ZFarming to the city of Berlin. The stakeholders identified urban rooftop greenhouses (RTG) as the most promising farming model for Berlin. In a joint collaboration of all stakeholders, a manual for RTG was developed within the participatory innovation process that addresses the identified problems and challenges associated with future implementation and governance of RTG in Berlin and beyond.
Urban rooftop farming (URF) projects have been set up or planned by non‐profit initiatives or business entrepreneurs in the cities of Berlin (Germany) and Barcelona (Spain) over the last few years. Beyond the already‐established types of urban agriculture (UA) (such as allotments or school gardens), these “new forms” of UA are attracting increasing interest that can be observed in both cities. According to their proponents, they are supposed to provide potential benefits in the urban setting. At the same time, they are connected to a number of associated problems, uncertainties and risks, which constrain their social acceptability.
Following the launch of the Campaign for School Gardening in 2007, the Royal Horticultural Society (RHS) commissioned NFER to assess the impact of school gardening on children’s learning and behaviour. This report presents the findings from the qualitative study of a representative sample of ten schools participating in the Campaign.
This paper seeks to contribute to the topic of alternative food production, which has attracted the attention of both scholars and practitioners in the last years, together with the increasingly stronger critique of the current food system. In the past, allotment gardens played an important role in cities’ food self-sufficiency, however they are often omitted from the current food production debate. In the Czech Republic, as well as other Central and Eastern European (CEE) countries...