کارآفرینی اکولوژیک: توسعه پایدار در جوامع محلی از طریق تولید مواد غذایی با کیفیت و نام تجاری محلی
|کد مقاله||سال انتشار||مقاله انگلیسی||ترجمه فارسی||تعداد کلمات|
|29133||2005||12 صفحه PDF||سفارش دهید||محاسبه نشده|
Publisher : Elsevier - Science Direct (الزویر - ساینس دایرکت)
Journal : Geoforum, Volume 36, Issue 4, July 2005, Pages 440–451
The paper explores the importance of specialised networks in shaping local/regional responses to the deepening crisis of conventional agriculture in the EU, as well as potentially creating a more sustainable platform for rural development. The emphasis will be on the problem-solving aspects of network creation and maintenance within a broader and not necessarily supportive competitive and regulatory environment. This involves examining, both over time and space, how networks function to shape knowledge and create a competitive willingness to innovate to achieve mutually beneficial goals. Through a process which we call ecological entrepreneurship, key actors facilitate sustainable development in the countryside by a combination of fragmentation, specialisation and quality building strategies. We empirically explore these evolutionary and spatial factors through two farming-centred networks—an organic farming network in the UK: the Graig Farm Producer Group; and a regional quality brand in the Netherlands: the Waddengroup Foundation. The analysis of these two networks is used to examine in-depth the significance and construction of the social and spatial milieu for providing the individual and collective capabilities to establish viable problem-solving responses. This raises questions of: (i) how such networks are and can be sustained over time; (ii) the extent to which there are common evolutionary pathways which reproduce and embed problem-solving network building; (iii) how different spatial relations are engendered and (iv) whether such ‘local’ projects can advance to wider counter-movements in the context of the prevailing political economy.
There is much discussion and critical analysis of the extent to which real progress has been made towards sustainable development during the decade since the Rio Earth Summit. And, whilst at the global level, many voices question the ability of international agreements to deliver sustainable development, in many localities, patterns of intra- and inter-community relationships have begun to emerge to offer some optimism for a bottom-up approach to the wider sustainability goal. Creating sustainability in rural spaces across the EU is one domain in which local initiatives have been playing an important and encouraging role. The ongoing crisis in European agriculture, and its links to sustainable rural development, may be characterised as a persistent struggle against stagnant or declining food consumption levels, increasing competition from foreign producers and novel foods, declining farm incomes and a producer-based ‘cost-price squeeze’ in conventional farming, and increasing public demands for higher quality in food and in the rural environment. Two responses to this plethora of challenges to EU agriculture and rural development have been a sharp increase in organic farming in all EU member states, as well as, more intense communication of quality in production through local and regional brand-building (see Renting et al., 2003). Our aim in this paper is to examine the importance of specialised food networks in shaping local/regional responses to the deepening crisis in EU agriculture; and to assess whether such locally and regionally-based networks have the capacity to contribute to more sustainable rural development (see Marsden, 2003). As such, the emphasis will be on the problem-solving aspects of local and regional network building; i.e. how networks function and evolve to shape knowledge and create a collective willingness to innovate to achieve mutually beneficial goals (using a combination of fragmentation, specialisation and quality building strategies). Data collected on two farming-centred networks—an organic farming network in the UK: the Graig Farm Producer Group, and a regional quality brand: the Waddengroup Foundation in the Netherlands—will be used to illustrate how local innovation and non-conventional thinking can foster sustainable economic, environmental and social development. Special emphasis will be placed on examining the underlying political and economic backdrop that shaped the operating contexts out of which these two successful case studies emerged, and, as importantly, are being maintained. Attempts will also be made to outline past, current and likely future constraints/opportunities to these local/regional initiatives, as well as the likelihood of these particular case studies acting as working examples for other localities.
نتیجه گیری انگلیسی
Despite considerable obstacles and constraints, not least from the maintenance of the competitive regulatory, rural and agricultural policies which continue to ‘lock-in’ producers into providing standardised food products at ever cheaper farm-gate prices, new and highly uneven network developments in agro-food are diffusing and contributing to a more diverse rural landscape in Europe. As we see from these two specific cases, this raises important conceptual questions on the capacity of local places to sustain these ‘counter-movements’. We have identified some of the key internal and external components which are shaping these new spatial relationships. Embodied in these is also the recognition of a new form of what we term ‘ecological entrepreneurship’, whereby key actors in the networks that develop play a decisive role in enrolling and mobilising other actors into the network; create and sustain its structures, and innovate in developing new interfaces between producers and consumers. We can postulate that this may be an important element in the progression of agrarian-based ecological modernisation more generally (Marsden, 2004); and it raises important theoretical issues which challenge the need to view ecological entrepreneurship as more than simply an oxymoron in the environmental policy literature and debates. It also takes us beyond the realms of generalised ‘social capital’ justifications for local rural development. What our cases demonstrate here is the need to match an understanding to new forms of network development with ecological entrepreneurship on the one hand, and the wider social and political economy of rural and regional landscapes on the other. As we see, both are important components in shaping rural space, with the former being distinctive in harnessing social, natural and economic resources in new ways for the purposes of carving out new value-creating niches. Ecological entrepreneurship, therefore, deserves more attention in the new rural social and spatial transformations suggested in this analysis. Whilst the scholarly literature concerning alternative food movements and networks has expanded rapidly over recent years, our analysis here suggests that more conceptual effort is now needed concerning the distinctive geographical and social components of these trends. In particular, such concepts as spatial contingency and capture, the degree of disconnection from conventional systems (i.e. ‘lock-in and lock-out’), retro-innovation and ecological entrepreneurship, would seem to be salient areas for critical development if we are to continue to assess the real sustainability and contestablity of the new and distinctive agro-food geographies that confront us.