Urban-Rural Food Biodiversity

Full Title

Linkages of agrobiodiversity in urban systems and food-producing landscapes


Supporting the biodiversity of food systems amid expanding urbanization is one of the main challenges facing humanity. This Pursuit addresses two major knowledge-policy gaps in this domain: (1) the biodiversity of food-producing landscapes (rural, periurban, urban) linked to urbanization; and (2) contemporary urbanization dynamics and their linkages to food systems. By food systems, the team refers to the entire supply chain from farm to fork. Urbanization processes include land use and urban form as well as demographics. These two areas—biodiversity of food production and urbanization dynamics—are poised for synthesis owing to rapidly expanding scientific interest and knowledge, accelerated real-world applications of policy and management, and technological innovations.

The overarching questions addressed by this Pursuit are: How do food-producing systems correspond to characteristic landscapes and connect to food supply chains and in turn how do these factors shape agrobiodiversity? How does the process of urbanization reshape the demand for food systems, and how does this in turn shape food diversity and landscapes? What are the processes and pathways by which food-producing landscapes, production systems and urbanization processes (e.g., food demand) are linked and affect each other?

Project Type
Team Synthesis Project
Principal Investigators
Karl Zimmerer, Pennsylvania State University
Karen C. Seto, Yale University
Tomás Carlo, Pennsylvania State University
Christine Chege, CIAT Kenya
Peleg Kremer, Villanova University
Nguyen Loc, AVRDC and CIAT Hanoi
Mahbubur Meenar, Rowan University
Leia Minaker, University of Waterloo
Kimberly Pfeifer, Oxfam America
Kameshwari (Kami) Pothukuchi, Wayne State University
Thomas Reardon, Michigan State University
Kibrom T. Sibhatu, University of Gottingen