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Agriculture and food 2050: visions to promote transformation driven by science and society

By E. Gebhard, N. Hagemann, L. Hensler, S. Schweizer, C. Wember

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Today's food production and consumption go hand in hand with immense damages to humans and nature. Change is needed, but where to start and which direction to go? This article tries to give an interdisciplinary answer by taking recourse to a vision, that is, an ideal image of the future which is drawn upon ethical reflection and beyond the limits of actual political and economic constraints. The main purpose of this paper is to show that generating and discussing visions can be a powerful process in order to regain ability to act in the face of the complex challenges of our time and that Education for Sustainable Development (ESD) plays an important role to enable current and future generations to become actors of change. First, a students vision on agriculture and society in 2050 is presented, followed by a theoretical examination of visions, their potentials, limits and practical implications. Subsequently, the results of a field analysis of current innovative solutions to local agriculture are given. These include intercultural gardens and community supported agriculture. Claiming that a sustainable development can only be reached if people are not only able to envision a desirable future, but to develop small scale, locally adapted solutions as answers to challenges such as climate change, this paper then focuses on the competence oriented educational concept of ESD. Here, an approach of integrating ethics in the course of studies of agricultural sciences implemented by a student's initiative serves as practice example.

Publication Title Journal of Agricultural & Environmental Ethics
Volume 28
Issue 3
Pages 497-516
ISBN/ISSN 0893-4282
DOI 10.1007/s10806-015-9532-4
Language English
Author Address StudierendenInitiative Greening The University e.V., Tuebingen, P.O. Box 2026, 72010 Tuebingen,
Cite this work

Researchers should cite this work as follows:

  1. Agriculture
  2. Constraints
  3. Developed countries
  4. Economics
  5. Education
  6. Ethics
  7. Europe
  8. Germany
  9. OECD countries
  10. peer-reviewed
  11. students
  1. peer-reviewed