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Exploring adaptation pathways to global change: lessons from failed attempts to bring agroecology to scale in Southeast Asia. [ID280]

Lestrelin G., Castella J.C., Kong R., Venot J.P., Neang M., Lienhard P., Tivet F.. 2019. Bern : Global Land Programme, 1 p.. Open Science Meeting of the Global Land Programme OSM2019. 4, 2019-04-21/2019-04-24, Bern (Suisse).

Agroecology is a promising way to synergize climate change mitigation and adaptation. It builds on the practices and knowledge of smallholder farmers to address food insecurity while reducing dependence on fossil fuels and avoiding land degradation. However, bringing agroecology to scale remains an important challenge when it comes to addressing the broader policy, social and economic contexts. Agroecology research and resulting evidence on what makes the application of agroecology principles successful are typically generated at small spatial scales. Policies instruments and intervention mechanisms that would create enabling conditions for local agroecological innovations on a large scale are still largely missing. We investigated the approaches, methods and resources employed by research-development stakeholders to promote agroecological practices in Southeast Asia. We considered two dimensions related to the modalities of intervention, namely (i) push-pull interventions and (ii) transition-conversion approaches. The first dimension refers to the distinction between push interventions ¿ where financial, technical, material and/or organizational support is provided to targeted actors allowing them to modify their practices (e.g. subsidies and farm extension work) ¿ and pull interventions that target the broader social and economic conditions in which actors make decisions in order to favour desired practices (e.g. sensitization and price premiums, regulations on agricultural practices e.g. restricted pesticide use). The second dimension refers to a practical opposition between approaches that promote a strict conversion from one set of practices to another seen as more desirable and approaches that allow (or even plan) for a transition between different practices. We illustrate these multiple dimensions of transformative adaptation through concrete examples related to conservation agriculture and organic farming in Laos and Cambodia.

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