Welcome to the website of the Section “International Agricultural Policy and Environmental Governance”!

If you are interested in research and teaching on European and International Agricultural and Environmental Policy and Governance and a critical evaluation of its impacts on regional and local social-ecological food systems and the natural environment then you visited the right place. In order to address these topics under the overarching frame of Ecological Economics we use institutional economics and political science approaches as well as approaches drawing on critical geography. Current research foci are:

European Agricultural and Environmental Policy with specific consideration of Organic Agriculture

Water management, biodiversity management, climate change adaptation, pastoralism, institutional aspects of transformations of land use

The development of the concept of polycentricity for the analysis of governance in the agricultural and environmental sectors

Comparative research relying on multiple methods

We hope you find this website useful. Please, contact us in case of further queries.

Please, also visit our websites:

Graduiertenzentrum für Umweltforschung und Lehre

Das Umweltprofil der Universität Kassel

Veranstaltungen, Aktuelles und Profil des WiSo-Bereiches


Job advertisement

We are looking for a research assistant in the research project "The role of nature for human well-being in the socio-ecological system of Kilimanjaro Kili-SES"

Welcome to...

Welcome to Wivina Byera Msebeni as a guest researcher in our section!

Wivina is an Assistant Lecturer of the Institute of Development Studies, University of Dar es Salaam Tanzania. She has interest in Evironmental governance, Agriculture and Rural development. Wivina holds a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology degree and a Masters of Arts in Sociology degree both from the University of Dar es Salaam Tanzania. www.udsm.ac.tz

Briefing Paper on water governance in Spain

Briefing Paper published on policy recommendations to address coordination challenges between the water and agricultural sector in the Guadalquivir river basin in Southern Spain. This publication is a product of the BMBF-funded research project STEER (2017-2020). Policy Brief

IASC Early Career Network Meeting

The Chair Agricultural and Economic Policy of University of Bonn, the Early Career Network of the International Association for the Study of the Commons (IASC) and Arvind Lakshmisha and Nora Schütze from this section jointly organized an Early Career Network Meeting for young scholars. [more]

Policy Brief

Policy Brief of our project "Social, Economic and Institutional Dimensions of Wastewater Reuse in Agriculture in Tunisia" (STEWART)

New Publication by Grace Mudombi-Rusinamhodzi and Andreas Thiel

Property rights and the conservation of forests in communal areas in Zimbabwe
in: Forest and Policy Economics

AGREE Virtual Winter School

Call for Participation
Project website

IASC: Early Career Network Meeting (5-6 October 2020)

The Section is happy to co-host an early career network meeting with University of Bonn. The network meeting takes place as part of the World Commons Week organised by the International Association for the Study of the Commons (IASC).

Governing the commons

Andreas Thiel joins the Ostrom Workshop - online symposium:

Elinor Ostrom’s Governing the Commons: 30 Years Later

Thursday, October 1, 2020
lecture by Frank van Laerhoven

Friday, October 2, 2020
9 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. (US, Indiana, Eastern Time Zone) online symposium

Module on Comparative Institutional Analysis of Social-Ecological Systems for Doctoral Students (21-25 September 2020)

The section is organising a one week module on “Comparative Institutional Analysis of Social-Ecological Systems” as part of the PromotionsKolleg Agrarökonomie for the third consecutive year.

“When is Polycentric Governance Sustainable?

Andreas Thiel joins the Ostrom Workshop "“When is Polycentric Governance Sustainable? Using Institutional Theory to Identify Endogenous Drivers of Dysfunctional Dynamics”

featuring Mike McGinnis (Ostrom Sr Research Fellow)

Papers, flyers, and the Zoom link can be found on the Colloquium Series web page.

Dear students, if you will be informed about our lectures and process during summer term 2020 in times of corona virus, we recommend you to urgently enroll in the corresponding moodle course. We will keep you updated how we will organise the courses. There is no access code to register. [more]

Publication in Ökologie & Landbau

Arrticle to Agricultural Ecology in Germany by Henri Tepasse, Study programme: M.Sc. Sustainable business/economics, 10/2017-03/2020 (Nachhaltiges Wirtschaften) Kassel University
Journal: Ökologie & Landbau: Edition 03-2020, Published 29th June 2020, Co-author in Eine globale Bewegung von Franziskus Forster

New project

The German Research Foundation (Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft - DFG) will finance a new Research Unit (FOR5064) on ‘The role of nature for human well-being in the Kilimanjaro Social-Ecological System’ (Kili-SES). The Section of International Agricultural Policy and Environmental Governance is leading a subproject on ‘Governance and institutions as drivers of Nature’s Contributions to People (NCP) supply and management’, closely working together with the Leuphana University Lüneburg, the University of Kiel, and the University of Dar es Salaam as Tanzanian counterpart.
This 4-years Research Unit will start in October 2020 and is coordinated by Prof. Dr. Katrin Böhning-Gaese at the Senckenberg Biodiversity and Climate Research Centre (SBiK-F). [more]

Stakeholder Workshop 24.02.2020

Prof. Andreas Thiel and Nora Schütze from this section organised a stakeholder workshop on “Modernization of irrigation, agricultural water consumption and water rights regime in the Guadalquivir”, which took place on February 24, 2020 in the University Pablo de Olavide in Seville, Spain. [more]

Podiumsdiskussion 13.02.2020

Podiumsdiskussion: „Chancen und Risiken der Reform der Europäischen Gemeinsamen Agrarpolitik aus der Sicht Hessens“


Exkursion WiSe 19/20

„In der Badewanne lernt man nicht schwimmen“, wusste schon das Berliner Original Zille. Deshalb unternahmen vom 30.01.20 bis zum 01.02.2020 einige Studierende der Mastermodule „Institutions and the Food System“ und „Politikfeldanalyse im Agrar- und Umweltsektor“, andere interessierte Studierende sowie zwei Mitarbeitende des Fachgebiets unter der Leitung von Prof. Dr. Andreas Thiel eine Exkursion in die Hauptstadt. [mehr]

Science, Policy Forum article

A greener path for the EU Common Agricultural Policy

It’s time for sustainable, environmental performance

by Guy Pe’er; Yves Zinngrebe; Francisco Moreira; Clélia Sirami; Stefan Schindler; Robert Müller; Vasileios Bontzorlos; Dagmar Clough; Peter Bezák; Aletta Bonn; Bernd Hansjürgens; Angela Lomba; Stefan Möckel; Gioele Passoni; Christian Schleyer; Jenny Schmidt; Sebastian Lakner

Science 365 (6452), 449-451. DOI: 10.1126/science.aax3146

New Book out

Governing Complexity: Analyzing and Applying Polycentricity

Thiel, Andreas; Blomquist, William A; Garrick, Dustin E. (Eds.) (2019): Governing Complexity: Analysing and Applying Polycentricity. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press


Excursion “Sustainable agricultural practices in the Mediterranean region”

Dr. Hussam Hussein participated in the excursion of the module “Sustainable agricultural practices in the Mediterranean region” as a co-organiser with Dr. Cristina Quintas-Soriano, Dr. Ilze Dzene, and Prof. Andreas Bürkert. [more]

Tropentag 2019

The Section was well represented at the Tropentag 2019 with the Section organizing a pre-conference workshop on “Exploring Agroecology: An interdisciplinary exchange” on Tuesday (17 September 2019). Professor Andreas Thiel and Dr. Ariane Goetz, chairing the oral and the poster session on Governance and Sustainable resource management respectively. Further two posters were also presented by Grace Mudombi-Rusinamhodzi and Arvind Lakshmishain the session on Agricultural transition and rural employment and Governance and sustainable resource management respectively. [more]

Further details of the visit: http://www.tropentag.de/conference/program.php