Scientific, Technical & Medical Agriculture & Farming Books

Designing Urban Food Policies: Concepts and Approaches (Urban Agriculture)

This Open Access book is for scientists and experts who work on urban food policies. It provides a conceptual framework for understanding the urban food system sustainability and how it can be tackled by local governments. Written by a collective of researchers, this book describes the existing conceptual frameworks for an analysis of urban food policies, at the crossroads of the concepts of food system and sustainable city. It provides a basis for identifying research questions related to urban local government initiatives in the North and South. It is the result of work carried out within Agropolis International within the framework of the Sustainable Urban Food Systems program and an action research carried out in support of Montpellier Méditerranée Métropole for the construction of its agroecological and food policy.

Climate Smart Agriculture: Building Resilience to Climate Change (Natural Resource Management and Policy Book 52)

This book is open access under a CC BY-NC-SA 3.0 IGO license.The book uses an economic lens to identify the main features of climate-smart agriculture (CSA), its likely impact, and the challenges associated with its implementation.  Drawing upon theory and concepts from agricultural development, institutional, and resource economics, this book expands and formalizes the conceptual foundations of CSA. Focusing on the adaptation/resilience dimension of CSA, the text embraces a mixture of conceptual analyses, including theory, empirical and policy analysis, and case studies, to look at adaptation and resilience through three possible avenues: ex-ante reduction of vulnerability, increasing adaptive capacity, and ex-post risk coping. The book is divided into three sections. The first section provides conceptual framing, giving an overview of the CSA concept and grounding it in core economic principles. The second section is devoted to a set of case studies illustrating the economic basis of CSA in terms of reducing vulnerability, increasing adaptive capacity and ex-post risk coping. The final section addresses policy issues related to climate change. Providing information on this new and important field in an approachable way, this book helps make sense of CSA and fills intellectual and policy gaps by defining the concept and placing it within an economic decision-making framework. This book will be of interest to agricultural, environmental, and natural resource economists, development economists, and scholars of development studies, climate change, and agriculture. It will also appeal to policy-makers, development practitioners, and members of governmental and non-governmental organizations interested in agriculture, food security and climate change.

The Climate-Smart Agriculture Papers: Investigating the Business of a Productive, Resilient and Low Emission Future

This book is open access under a CC BY 4.0 license.This volume shares new data relating to Climate-Smart Agriculture (CSA), with emphasis on experiences in Eastern and Southern Africa. The book is a collection of research by authors from over 30 institutions, spanning the public and private sectors, with specific knowledge on agricultural development in the region discussed. The material is assembled to answer key questions on the following five topic areas: (1) Climate impacts: What are the most significant current and near future climate risks undermining smallholder livelihoods? (2) Varieties: How can climate-smart varieties be delivered quickly and cost-effectively to smallholders? (3) Farm management: What are key lessons on the contributions from soil and water management to climate risk reduction and how should interventions be prioritized? (4) Value chains: How can climate risks to supply and value chains be reduced? and (5) Scaling up: How can most promising climate risks reduction strategies be quickly scaled up and what are critical success factors? Readers who will be interested in this book include students, policy makers, and researchers studying climate change impacts on agriculture and agricultural sustainability.

Development Policies and Policy Processes in Africa: Modeling and Evaluation (Advances in African Economic, Social and Political Development)

This book is open access under a CC BY 4.0 license. The book examines the methodological challenges in analyzing the effectiveness of development policies. It presents a selection of tools and methodologies that can help tackle the complexities of which policies work best and why, and how they can be implemented effectively given the political and economic framework conditions of a country. The contributions in this book offer a continuation of the ongoing evidence-based debate on the role of agriculture and participatory policy processes in reducing poverty. They develop and apply quantitative political economy approaches by integrating quantitative models of political decision-making into existing economic modeling tools, allowing a more comprehensive growth-poverty analysis. The book addresses not only scholars who use quantitative policy modeling and evaluation techniques in their empirical or theoretical research, but also technical experts, including policy makers and analysts from stakeholder organizations, involved in formulating and implementing policies to reduce poverty and to increase economic and social well-being in African  countries.

Agroecological Transitions: From Theory to Practice in Local Participatory Design

This Open Access book presents feedback from the ‘Territorial Agroecological Transition in Action’- TATA-BOX research project, which was devoted to these specific issues. The multidisciplinary and multi-organisation research team steered a four-year action-research process in two territories of France. It also presents:i) the key dimensions to be considered when dealing with agroecological transition: diversity of agriculture models, management of uncertainties, polycentric governance, autonomies, and role of actors’ networks;ii) an operational and original participatory process and associated boundary tools to support local stakeholders in shifting from a shared diagnosis to a shared action plan for transition, and in so doing developing mutual understanding and involvement;iii) an analysis of the main effects of the methodology on research organisation and on stakeholders’ development and application;iv) critical analysis and foresights on the main outcomes of TATA-BOX, provided by external researchers.

Forest and Rangeland Soils of the United States Under Changing Conditions: A Comprehensive Science Synthesis

This open access book synthesizes leading-edge science and management information about forest and rangeland soils of the United States. It offers ways to better understand changing conditions and their impacts on soils, and explores directions that positively affect the future of forest and rangeland soil health. This book outlines soil processes and identifies the research needed to manage forest and rangeland soils in the United States. Chapters give an overview of the state of forest and rangeland soils research in the Nation, including multi-decadal programs (chapter 1), then summarizes various human-caused and natural impacts and their effects on soil carbon, hydrology, biogeochemistry, and biological diversity (chapters 2–5). Other chapters look at the effects of changing conditions on forest soils in wetland and urban settings (chapters 6–7). Impacts include: climate change, severe wildfires, invasive species, pests and diseases, pollution, and land use change. Chapter 8 considers approaches to maintaining or regaining forest and rangeland soil health in the face of these varied impacts. Mapping, monitoring, and data sharing are discussed in chapter 9 as ways to leverage scientific and human resources to address soil health at scales from the landscape to the individual parcel (monitoring networks, data sharing Web sites, and educational soils-centered programs are tabulated in appendix B). Chapter 10 highlights opportunities for deepening our understanding of soils and for sustaining long-term ecosystem health and appendix C summarizes research needs. Nine regional summaries (appendix A) offer a more detailed look at forest and rangeland soils in the United States and its Affiliates.

Forests, Carbon Cycle and Climate Change (Update Sciences & technologies)

The results presented in this book summarize the main findings of the CARBOFOR project, which brought together 52 scientists from 14 research units to investigate the effects of future climate on the carbon cycle, the productivity and vulnerability of French forests. This book explains the current forest carbon cycle in temperate and Mediterranean climates, including the dynamics of soil carbon and the total carbon stock of French forests, based on forest inventories. It reviews and illustrates the main ground-based methods for estimating carbon stocks in tree biomass. Spatial variations in projected climate change over metropolitan France throughout the 21st century are described. The book then goes on to consider the impacts of climate change on tree phenology and forest carbon balance, evapotranspiration and production as well as their first order interaction with forest management alternatives. The impact of climate change on forest vulnerability is analysed. A similar simulation study was carried out for a range of pathogenic fungi, emphasizing the importance of both warming and precipitation changes. The consequences of climate change on the occurrence of forest fires and the forest carbon cycle in the Mediterranean zone are also considered.A valuable reference for researchers and academics, forest engineers and managers, and graduate level students in forest ecology, ecological modelling and forestry.