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Tropentag, September 17 - 19, 2013 in Stuttgart-Hohenheim

"Agricultural development within the rural-urban continuum"

Urban Agriculture – Promising Option for Sustainable Urban Development

Heike Ostermann

Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ), Agriculture, Dep. 45, Germany


Urban agriculture is not a new phenomenon but has since ever been part of urban settlements and urban life strategies. In times of rapidly growing cities combined with increasing poverty, food insecurity, social fragility and environmental hazards, urban agriculture has the potential to minimise these challenges by its multifaceted character. This puts it in the centre of the so-called “Food-Water-Energy-Nexus” which could be strengthened by appropriately designed projects.
The term “urban agriculture” describes very different phenomena of agricultural production in and around cities, from highly commercialised farming in the periphery to small holder activities within cities.
The presentation will focus on the latter, but also highlight the potential of highly commercialised farming for poverty reduction.
Challenges for urban agriculture differ from those for rural agriculture and have to be addressed properly in urban policy and planning. New trends of urban agriculture like “rooftop farming” and “sky farming” or “vertical farming” will be presented in the light of their potential for developing countries.
Projects to promote urban agriculture should improve the frame conditions to achieve the multiple impacts and – at the same time - minimise potential risk factors like hygienic or environmental problems due to unsustainable agricultural practices.

Keywords: Poverty reduction

Contact Address: Heike Ostermann, Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ), Agriculture, Dep. 45, Godesberger Allee 119, 53175 Bonn, Germany, e-mail: heike.ostermann@giz.de

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