AGROECOLOGICAL URBANIZATION: THE TERRITORIAL UTOPIA OF THE FOOD SOVEREIGNTY MOVEMENT

Martín Arboleda

Recent decades have witnessed the emergence of a globalizing peasant movement that aims at the radical transformation of the food system under the banners of a post-capitalist science of food production (i.e. agroecology), and of popular self-determination via the notion of food sovereignty. Although the program and ambitions of this new agrarian internationalism are of world-historical significance, the territorial expansion or ‘scaling out’ of agroecological farming systems has remained limited due to substandard mechanisms of distribution, to capitalist land-tenure systems, as well as to material and ideological disconnection between agricultural producers and urban consumers –indicative of a wider gap between peasant movements and the urban laboring classes. By means of a geo-comparative study of emerging trends in agro-food supply chains, this project seeks to assess existing initiatives that aim at superseding such relation of separation between city and non-city space, and to reimagine the future of urban settlements on the basis of agrobiodiverse farming systems that are collectively governed and intensive on scientific knowledge. This will involve a comprehensive study of the governance structures, sociotechnical systems, political struggles, planning instruments, design visions, and formations of urban praxis that are advancing –or are well positioned to advance- the agenda of agroecological urbanization.

Projected outcome: Journal articles, book, and exhibition.

Andrea Branzi’s 1995 project Agronica (Source: La Periferia Doméstica at the Venice Biennale).