Project deliverable Open Access
Mahdavi Parastoo; Vandenbroucke Perrine
Work package 2 (WP2) focuses on the assessment and analysis of living labs (LL) and research infrastructures (RI) in the past and present independent of the scale and place at which they operate. To support the development of LLs and RIs in Europe, a set of indicators for the successful transition of agricultural production systems towards sustainability is identified and will be employed for evaluating the respective infrastructures and functionality of LL and RI. This set of indicators will be linked to opportunities to achieve the sustainable development goals (SDG) through agroecology and LL and RI. In order to identify skills, tools and methods that are promising drivers for future agroecosystem LL and RI, WP2 has elaborated on the two concepts of Living Labs and Agroecology Territories. For both concepts, trait and indicator grids were developed which are used for a more comprehensive data and information acquisition with the aim of getting representative samples of LL and AET across Europe. Based on the first steps taken in the two tasks and the preliminary analyses undertaken, the following conclusions can be drawn:
The two concepts of Agroecology Territories and Living Labs are both related to agroecological transformation of production and sustainable food systems. They aim at encouraging policy making towards schemes for innovation in natural resource governance and sustainable rural livelihoods. While the trait catalog for LL and the grid of transition processes for AET have been designed with concertation between TI and ISARA, the need for different indicators to characterize and assess both concepts became apparent. Although the two concepts cannot completely be merged, some place-based LL could be considered as AET such as Agroecology Living Labs and some AET can be considered as Living Labs if they include research infrastructures and networks, for instance through participatory research programs. The trait-- and indicator-based approaches of T2.1 and T2.3 will have a positive impact on the understanding of the stakeholders, providing a deeper understanding of the important functional and structural components of LL and AET. They will further help identifying initiatives that do not consider themselves as LL or AET and will help in placing those initiatives into a general framework of infrastructures accelerating the transition towards sustainable production and food systems.
When successful, both concepts will be used for informing the creation of the European Partnership an Agroecology and the approaches of trait- and indicator based assessments of LL and AET will disseminated to groups of stakeholders at the European as well as national level and engagement in application of the approach by stakeholders will be supported.