Urban agriculture and wildlife conservation

Nowadays, due to exponential population growth and a rural exodus, cities are expanding. Infrastructure is needed to support and feed this growing population. Because of the anthropocentric paradigm, this is often to the detriment of wildlife, whereas it would be possible to create cities that are fulfilling for humans as well as for the rest of the living world. It would even be necessary to allow this cohabitation as biodiversity is an essential element for the resilience of the living world. Urban agriculture allows cities to have a certain food autonomy and improves the quality of life of the inhabitants. The question now is to define if it has the potential to integrate wildlife conservation into urban planning.

Poverty and urbanisation: an anthropogenic challenge on the spread of infectious diseases

Landscapes are increasingly modified by humans. These habits have disrupted ecosystems and even the climate, which only a few decades ago seemed to be an unshakeable natural force. At the same time, more and more infectious diseases have also been observed in humans. There is clearly a causal link between this human lifestyle and the development of infectious diseases. In order to define this link, it is necessary to understand how these diseases develop and what elements are necessary for their perpetuation. To understand the life cycle of infectious diseases as well as their consequences, this essay will focus on one particular type which is waterborne diseases and more specifically a snail-borne disease called Schistosomiasis also known as Bilharzia or snail fever.

Implementing Urban Agroecology in Padova

This project identifies public green spaces in the municipality of Padova that could be converted in community gardens or food forests following agroecological principles. It is composed of three outputs. First, a short report presents and contextualises the map of the potential community gardens and food forests identified in Padova. Their location is determined according to a set of geographical and socio-economic indicators based partly on the academic literature, partly on successful case studies of community gardens and food forests in other European cities. Second, the located areas are reported on the GeoCitizen platform, so that inhabitants of Padova are made aware of the potential of these locations and can contribute to bringing them to life. Third, a story map brings it all together in a visual and engaging way that describes more concretely and deeply how four of the identified public green spaces of Padova could be used for the development of a community garden and a food forest.

Biodiversity as a framework for the transition of production modes

The current production and consumption models are the main culprits in the decline of biodiversity. It is therefore necessary to study and implement solutions to reduce the impact of businesses and industries on the environment and more particularly on biodiversity. The circular economy aims to reduce this pressure by rethinking the linear management of resources using multiple tools and concepts such as the economy of functionality, eco-design, industrial symbiosis and the Lansink ladder, which prioritises the order of reuse of waste.

Towards a sustainable food system: investigating the farmer-retailer relationship

This paper will look at an alternative Belgian supermarket called Bio-Planet that sells almost exclusively organic products. The aim of the research is to determine whether this model can help to shift the current food system, which is mainly dominated by supermarkets selling conventional agricultural and industrial products, towards a more resilient system. This will be done through the prism of the relationship between the retailer and the farmers they work with. In order to do so, this paper will attempt to answer the question "How does the relationship between Bio-Planet and its Belgian farmers influence organic and local food production?”. This question will be subdivided into 3 sub-questions in order to better focus the research.

Analysis and critique from a political ecological perspective : the rural development program in Wallonia

Our way of operating has been increasingly challenged and is reflected in a shift and multiplicity of paradigms in environmental policy-making. In the framework of this work, I was interested is the one of the rural development program in Wallonia. This interest comes from an action that was taken during a summit meeting between the European Agricultural Machinery Association (CEMA) and representatives of the European Union for the introduction of Smart-Farm and other agricultural technologies. This action underlined the importance of the technological sovereignty of farmers and denounced the lobbying of the committee. In order to develop my reflection on the subject, I interviewed a strong advocate of technological sovereignty. Following our discussion and various research I started to wonder about the decision making process on the allocation of budgets for such technologies. This led me to look at the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) which is a European policy. In order to have a vision at different scales and to make a more precise and complete analysis of the decision-making process, I reduced the sphere of research to Wallonia and its rural development program. The latter being itself one of the pillars of the CAP operating here at a regional level.

Fighting Food Insecurity Through Refugee Integration in Dadaab: The Potential of SHGs & Agroecological Training

This report identifies food and job insecurity as well as relationships with the host population as the most pressing challenges facing refugees living in the Dadaab refugee complex in Kenya. In the face of these challenges, this report aims to design a long-term solution to reduce refugees and host communities’ precarity. Accordingly, it explores three alternatives to the actual situation that could improve their life conditions, namely food assistance, home gardening and integrated agroecological training. It is argued that the third option is the best one to address Dadaab refugees' as it offers a holistic response to the challenges faced.

Response to a call for proposals for the design, animation and capitalisation of the Fabrique Prospective

Time is an integral part of the quality of life of citizens. However, inequalities in the use and control of time are very marked and increasing, leading to a general feeling of acceleration and scarcity of time. It is therefore essential that the territories implement actions to adapt to this rapid change in the pace of life. The creation of a Foresight Factory with the ANCT (National Agency for Territorial Cohesion) is an opportunity to put the question of time back at the centre of the concerns of local authorities, with medium-sized towns as a testing ground.