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Exploring the ‘Unknown Unknowns’ of Urban Farming: An ethnographic case study, in narrative form, on the last urban farm in Stockholm, Sweden
Stockholm University, Stockholm Resilience Centre.
2011 (English)Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (Two Years)), 40 credits / 60 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

Abstract. The prediction of growing global populations flocking to cities, increasingdemands for more food production, the call to maintain biodiversity and the interactionsof many different stakeholders elicits quite a mind-boggling medley of complexity. Theact of 'urban farming' may be a promising starting point in which to begin understandingthis complexity. This thesis strives to untangle the variables within this predictionthrough a narrative approach, weaving in relationships of power in order to understandthe complexity of this 'mess,' by tracing the actions of the last urban farmers inStockholm, Sweden. Employing Complexity Thinking, the narrative is temporallyorganized in order to highlight context, purpose and motive, aiming to promoteverisimilitude through systematically assembling interpretations while supporting themwith thick details as to what 'urban farming' interpretively is. Discrepancies, connectionsand contradictions from the case study are juxtaposed against one another to displayplurality of views across different scales of space and time. The case study highlightsurban farming's marginalization by illustrating historically distinct institutional shifts ingovernance; drawing attention to policies and regulations, past actions and artifacts,which, when self-organized to the present, are 'currently' reducing the farmers'possibilities for food production, promoting instead, an arguably beautiful, yet'unsustainable' biodiversity-and-urban-park emphasis, ignoring the appetites of the city'srapidly growing population and the accompanying external food dependencies that growwith it. Conclusions point to a deeper seeded issue in the founding assumption of thescientific prediction, calling attention to contextuality, unpredictability, the problemsassociated with a governing logic and/or a compressed-way-of-thinking and the generalneed or willingness to appreciate the complexity of things, actions and people –particularly people who grow or raise our food.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2011. , 161 p.
National Category
Social Sciences Interdisciplinary
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-62128OAI: diva2:439909
Life Earth Science
Available from: 2011-09-09 Created: 2011-09-09 Last updated: 2011-09-09Bibliographically approved

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