Agriculture and food in sustainable transition

Learning and intermediation
Agriculture and food in sustainable transition
No 70, 2023/1 - 294 pages

Current agri-food systems are dominated by intensive agriculture: simplified cultivation, standardized practices and low crop diversity. Production and marketing methods are oriented towards a constant search for productivity and competitiveness. These systems have generated unacceptable social, environmental and health impacts. The transformation of these systems depends on technological innovations, but also on changes in production and consumption patterns, skills, values, institutions, policies, etc. The transformation of systems involves the participation of many actors (companies, research institutions, citizens, associations, etc.) whose coordination requires special attention. Among the accelerating factors of the transformation of agri-food systems, learning and intermediation play a key role: the creation or acquisition of new knowledge in formal or informal contexts mobilizes a variety of actors incited to collaborate in order to collectively contribute to the sustainable transition; the incitement, cohesion and coordination of the activities of the stakeholders in these processes reveal the importance of intermediation that acts at various phases of the transition path (exploration phase, acceleration phase and stabilization phase). The contributions in this special issue of the journal Innovations, Revue d'économie et de management de l'innovation focus on learning and intermediation for accelerating transitions towards sustainable agriculture and food.