When are Interventions for a More Sustainable Agriculture Successful? Towards an Analytical Framework
Published: 31 October 2014 by MDPI in The 4th World Sustainability Forum session Sustainable Agriculture, Food and Wildlife
Abstract: Today's agriculture both contributes significantly to current environmental, social, and economic problems and also suffers from the consequences of this non-sustainable development. Despite the importance of research at the farm level to tackle these problems, it has often been argued that research and work for sustainable agriculture has to go beyond the farm gate. However, designing and implementing solutions at higher levels makes the collaboration of different stakeholders indispensable. There has already been much work on conditions influencing success or failure of joint action but there has been no research specifically on conditions for the success of collaborative interventions that aim at the improvement of the sustainability of agriculture. Furthermore, much of the existing work is based on the examination of one or few case studies, which makes it difficult to identify overall patterns. To fill this gap, we are conducting a case survey of collaborative interventions aiming at a more sustainable agriculture at the local or regional level in the EU. One crucial step in the case survey method is the design of an analytical or coding scheme. In this paper, we describe how we derived the variables making up our coding scheme. This includes the formulation of a meaningful definition of what actually is a case as well as the operationalization of 'success'. Finally, we give an overview over the resulting coding scheme, containing factors that potentially contribute to or hinder the success of collaborative interventions trying to achieve a more sustainable agriculture.
Keywords: Sustainable agriculture; collaboration; interventions; local level; regional level; landscape level; case survey; analytical framework