751-5003-00L  Sustainable Agroecosystems II

SemesterAutumn Semester 2021
LecturersK. Benabderrazik, M. Hartmann
Periodicityyearly recurring course
Language of instructionEnglish

AbstractThis class conveys current topics and methods of agroecological and food systems research through selected case studies from ongoing research of the Sustainable Agroecosystems group. Students will be encouraged to develop critical thinking competencies, through individual and group work, on major agricultural and food system challenges and paths towards agricultural and food system transformation
Objective(1) Systematically analyse and discuss case studies from ongoing agroecological and food system research.
(2) Learn and experiment on methods for field and laboratory investigations in agroecology.
(3) Engage with positive and empowering frameworks that motivate
critical reflection and action on the types of transformative responses needed to adapt and thrive within agricultural and food systems.
(4) Reflect critically on agricultural and food system transformation tools and methods from the perspective a food system stakeholder.
(5) Identify and describe institutions in the context of sustainable agricultural development (for Bachelor and Master thesis and internships).
ContentThe course will address a wide range of agricultural and food system challenges (e.g. food security, climate change, soil degradation, etc.) in both temperate and tropical contexts, from building food system resilience through innovative measures, to addressing soil fertility and GHG emissions. A wide variety of case studies will be presented, covering different scales (e.g. value-chains, farm and soil management). The class is complemented by a role-playing exercise on food system transformation. Students will gain an overview on institutions and actors’ roles in the field of sustainable agricultural development. Throughout the exercise, students will learn to cooperate through a teamwork exercise and understand what is the role of each stakeholders in the food system in order to support a sustainable transformation.
LiteratureGliessman, S.R. (2014) Agroecology: the ecology of sustainable food systems. 3rd edition, CRC Press. 405 p.
(recommended text book)
Steve Gliessman (2016) Transforming food systems with agroecology, Agroecology and Sustainable Food Systems, 40:3, 187- 189, DOI: 10.1080/21683565.2015.1130765
HLPE. 2019. Agroecological and other innovative approaches for sustainable agriculture and food systems that enhance food security and nutrition. A report by the High-Level Panel of Experts on Food Security and Nutrition of the Committee on World Food Security, Rome.
Link to report: Link
Prerequisites / NoticePrior participation in the lecture Nachhaltige Agrarökosysteme I (Sustainable Agroecosystems I) 751-5000-00G (spring term) recommended.
Subject-specific CompetenciesConcepts and Theoriesassessed
Method-specific CompetenciesAnalytical Competenciesassessed
Social CompetenciesCooperation and Teamworkassessed
Sensitivity to Diversityassessed
Personal CompetenciesCritical Thinkingassessed
Self-awareness and Self-reflection assessed
Self-direction and Self-management assessed