In April 2018 the 2nd International Agroecology Symposium was held in Rome by the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO). It focused on the potential of agro-ecological farming systems in the fight against malnutrition for international development cooperations. As a promising approach, agroecology could help to achieve the turnaround towards a more sustainable agriculture and to optimize the use of local and renewable resources so that the second sustainable development goal of the UN, to end hunger and improve nutrition by 2030, can be succeeded.
Agroecology is an integrative approach that applies environmental and social concepts and principles to food and agricultural systems. The aim is to optimize the interactions between plants, trees, animals, humans and the environment taking into account social aspects, in order to develop sustainable and fair systems. Aspects of agricultural use of farmland and green spaces are linked to influences from natural ecosystems such as forests, bogs or rivers. Special emphasis is put on the traditional knowledge of the local population. The key is to combine experience with scientific knowledge to drive agroecological innovation.
(1) FAO. Second International Symposium on Agroecology, available via http://www.fao.org/about/meetings/second-international-agroecology-symposium/en/
(2) FAO. The Scaling Up Agroecology Initiative, available via http://www.fao.org/3/I9049EN/i9049en.pdf
(3) FAO. The 10 Elements of Agroecology. Guiding the Transition to Sustainable Food and Agricultural Systems. available via http://www.fao.org/3/I9037EN/i9037en.pdf