Tropentag 2019


Workshop “Exploring Agroecology: An Interdisciplinary Exchange” at the Tropentag 2019 (Kassel), organized by Ariane Goetz, Andreas Thiel and Hussam Hussein.

Agroecology as a long-standing field of integrated resource science, movement, system and practice offers extensive experiences and scientific advancements that can inform current debates on sustainable agriculture and its governance. At the core, agroecology intends to transform the industrial agri-food system and address related sustainability crises of climate change, food insecurity, loss of biodiversity, resources pollution and overuse, and corporate concentration.

The Workshop Exploring Agroecology aimed to foster an interdisciplinary dialogue on State-of-the-Art sciences, theoretical perspectives and management practices of agroecology, as well as to explore what different theoretical traditions may contribute to the study of agroecological issues today. It discussed constitutive aspects from the viewpoint of history, ecology, agronomics, and knowledge production by way of input presentations, followed by a lively debate with and amongst participants on agroecological perspectives on sustainable agriculture and ways forward.

Input presentations comprised Jürn Sanders’ (Thünen Institut) overview of agroecology’s geneology, theory, and practice;  Benjamin Blumenstein’s (Kassel University) insights regarding sustainable optimization, focusing on trade-offs between ecological and economic objectives of production; and Brigitte Kaufmann’s (DITSL, Kassel University, University Hohenheim) experiences with transdisciplinary methods of knowledge generation and central factor in knowledge-intensive agroecological systems.