ERIC Number: EJ913259
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2010-Dec
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 0
New Ways of Working and Organization: Alternative Agrifood Movements and Agrifood Researchers
Friedland, William H.
Rural Sociology, v75 n4 p601-627 Dec 2010
The remarkable growth of alternative agrifood movements--organics, fair trade, localism, Slow Food, farmers' markets, community-supported agriculture, food security, food safety, food sovereignty, anti-genetically modified organisms, animal welfare, and others--and their attraction to younger academic scholars offer a unique opportunity to explore ways to strengthen such movements utilizing the structural position and distinctive skills of academic researchers. The various movements constitute the major resource; sympathetic academic researchers are a second resource. Mobilizing these two resources in a new organization, the Alternative Agrifood Researchers without Borders, has the potential to contribute to strengthening the movements and their original progressive orientations and advancing civil society. To be effective, a new organization should parallel existing structures in state and market but focus on progressive goals aimed at reducing inequalities and expanding political and social participation. In building a body of literature usable for comparative analysis, the goal should be more effective alternative agrifood movements providing better services to broader global constituencies while simultaneously improving academic research quality. I draw on three social theories--resource mobilization, strategic intervention, and structural parallelism--to encourage careful revision of established academic paradigms.
Descriptors: Role of Education, Food Standards, Comparative Analysis, Researchers, Social Theories, Agribusiness, Agricultural Production, Social Action, Political Issues, Social Change, Economic Change, Social Justice, Research Utilization, Organizations (Groups)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Authoring Institution: N/A