Knowledge for Development

Agricultural development and sustainability: A review of recent and earlier perspectives


Date: 10/03/2015


In this paper, Clem Tisdell, University of Queensland, Australia, reviews various perspectives on agricultural sustainability, starting from three-pillar concept of sustainable development, proposed and applied by Gordon Conway to the evaluation of alternative agro-ecosystems in the 1980s. Tisdell shows that more recent perspectives have adopted a wider approach focusing on ways to sustainably increase agricultural supplies rather than to just maintain them. This recognizes that a substantial increase in demand for agricultural produce is expected in this century. In these approaches comparative roles of agro-ecology and economics in guiding agricultural production are discussed, and the concept of multifunctional agriculture is re-examined in the light of proposals for the sustainable intensification of agriculture. (University of Queensland, 25/01/2015)

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