August 25, 2014

LIBERATION: A Knowledge Platform for Ecological Intensification

Elise Ursin, EcoAgriculture Partners As it becomes increasingly clear that industrial agriculture is not sustainable, the current search for alternatives may very well define the future of food. Though academics, policy makers, and civil society organizations have produced an impressive amount of research on sustainable farming and ecosystems, these approaches still remain rela ...
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August 18, 2014

Agri-Culture and Agroecosystems: Producing More, Protecting More

By Jules Pretty, Professor of Environment and Society, University of Essex Interest in agricultural sustainability can be traced to environmental concerns that began to appear in the 1950s and 1960s, particularly with books by Rachel Carson and Barbara Ward. However, concepts and practice of sustainability date back at least to the oldest surviving texts from […] ...
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June 20, 2014

Priorities for Research to Achieve Landscapes for People, Food and Nature in Africa

Christine Negra EcoAgriculture Partners

In too many parts of Africa, a challenging combination of natural resource and labor constraints and limited access to agricultural inputs and technologies reinforces persistent yield gaps and rural poverty traps. Now more than ever, innovative research on sustainable agriculture is crucial to Africa’s well-being. In 2001-2008, public research and development (R&D) in sub ...
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May 9, 2014

What is the Potential for Responsible Soy Production?

Kedar Mankad

This year’s 9th annual Roundtable on Responsible Soy (RTRS) conference (May 7th-8th) took place at a critically important time for the industry. With relatively high prices, increasing overall demand from China, and another year of drought in palm oil production areas, the emphasis on increasing production is strong. The question then for participants at the RTRS […] ...
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March 24, 2014

Agroforestry Intensification: A Long-term Solution to Perennial Food Shortages in Africa

The United Nation’s International Day of Forests and the Tree brings attention to these aspects of our landscapes. Forests and trees fill many roles, ranging from cultural and spiritual importance to sustenance, livelihoods, watershed protection and important carbon sinks in the face of climate change. Despite the many purposes and capacities of forests, we are destroyin ...
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January 2, 2014

The Landscapes Blog's Big Issues 2013

Happy New Year! With 2014 upon us, it’s a good time to review some of the big emerging or debated issues related to integrated landscape approaches the Landscapes Blog covered last year. Climate change was a pervasive theme on the Landscape Blog, and in conversations on agriculture, environment, and development. Issues related to climate change were […] ...
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October 2, 2013

A New Frame for Agricultural Intensification

Three strong perspectives characterized the Roundtable on the Landscapes Blog, and challenged readers to rethink the frame in which sustainable intensification is set. Professor Joern Fischer dispels notions of optimizing for one output, arguing that many traditional systems are efficient as well as diverse, we just need to consider efficiency of the whole – of multiple ...
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September 30, 2013

Sows and Soil: Building a Sustainable and Profitable Farm

By Harry Stoddart, Stoddart Family Farm, Ontario, Canada

The System of Rice Intensification drew last week to a close, but we continue discussing the challenges and means by which to increase productivity of land while balancing ecological and social needs. Today, Harry Stoddart articulates the approach and underlying mentality he has cultivated over the years, moving from industrial farming to a more holistic […] ...
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September 27, 2013

What Does ‘Intensification’ of Agricultural Production Look Like at Landscape Scale?

By Norman Uphoff, SRI-Rice, Cornell University Wednesday’s post from Professor Joern Fischer provided some background on agricultural intensification, benefits and pitfalls, and a movement toward “sustainability.” In particular, he noted how landscape scale adds complexity to intensifying practices, but also helps build resilience. Professor Norman Uphoff provides a concr ...
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September 25, 2013

From Farm to Landscape: Avoiding the Pitfalls of Intensification

Joern Fischer Leuphana University Lueneburg

  Editor’s Note: Today’s guest author kicks off this month’s Landscapes Roundtable series with a discussion of key considerations on the topic of sustainable intensification.  Intensification, and especially “sustainable intensification,” is now frequently being hailed as a potential solution to simultaneously address concerns about environmental protection ...
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