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Begg, Lily, 2023. Exploring learning processes and social capital in community urban agriculture projects in Bogotá, Colombia. Second cycle, A2E. Alnarp: SLU, Dept. of Biosystems and Technology (from 130101)



As the world’s population becomes increasingly urban, the social, economic and environmental living conditions of city-dwellers are under pressure. High levels of pollution, lack of transport links, informal housing, unemployment rates and increasing inequalities are just some of the challenges that rapidly urbanising cities face. Urban and peri-urban agriculture (UPA) is being promoted in many of the world’s cities as a solution to some of these problems. Through case studies of different cities, UPA is proving to be increasingly multifunctional in its ability to tackle a holistic range of economic, environmental and social challenges.
This thesis analyses the capacity-building effect of community UPA projects in Bogotá, Colombia, and aims to give an in-depth insight into the learning and skill-sharing processes at work. In a context where UPA is valued for its ability to provide food security and secondary income to citizens, this thesis takes a different approach and instead sheds light on the potential for UPA projects to empower citizens and develop social capital in disadvantaged communities. The data were collected through a mixed-methods approach with questionnaires, focus group interviews and observations performed in six urban farm projects across Bogotá. These data were triangulated with a semi-structured interview with a technical assistant and literature such as official government documentation, reports and research papers relevant to the thesis topic. An agroecological perspective, a social capital framework and a selection of learning theories were used to structure the investigation, to inform the collection of data and to analyse the results.
The findings reveal that social capital-building and learning processes flourish when farmers, knowledge networks, advisory services, institutions, governments and policies are well-connected and directed towards the same aims. The investigation also reveals the strengths and weaknesses in the capacity-building processes in the context of UPA in Bogotá, which can be used to inform and shape future policy and UPA programs both in Bogotá and in cities across the world. By embracing the potential that community UPA has to build more resilient and empowered communities, cities can shape their UPA programs more around the soft skills needed in such projects to ensure their long-term success and positive outcomes.

Main title:Exploring learning processes and social capital in community urban agriculture projects in Bogotá, Colombia
Authors:Begg, Lily
Supervisor:Melin, Martin
Examiner:Spendrup, Sara
Volume/Sequential designation:UNSPECIFIED
Year of Publication:2023
Level and depth descriptor:Second cycle, A2E
Student's programme affiliation:LM005 Agroecology - Master's programme 120 HEC
Supervising department:(LTJ, LTV) > Dept. of Biosystems and Technology (from 130101)
Keywords:urban and peri-urban agriculture (UPA), social capital, social learning, knowledge transfer, capacity-building, agroecology, community UPA, Bogotá, huerta
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Subject. Use of subject categories until 2023-04-30.:Development economics and policies
Deposited On:23 Mar 2023 06:15
Metadata Last Modified:24 Mar 2023 02:00

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