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Integrated Assessment of Health and Sustainability of Agroecosystems




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ISBN 9781420072778
Published June 10, 2008 by CRC Press
256 Pages 65 B/W Illustrations

 
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Book Description

Exploring the implementation of participatory, multistakeholder, and transdisciplinary ecosystem health research, Integrated Assessment of Health and Sustainability of Agroecosystems combines the latest theories in complexity and management with practical tools and approaches for sustainable rural development research.  Although the text focuses on smallholder farming communities in the central highlands of Kenya, the material discussed can be—and has been—effectively applied to agroecosystems in many other parts of the world.

After showing how the agroecosystem health framework was successfully adapted in a smallholder-dominated agroecosystem, the book integrates participatory methods, systems analyses, pulse process models, and soft systems methods in an open-ended, adaptive R&D process. It then looks at how to use correspondence analysis to refine a research-based suite of indicators and analyze data obtained using indicators.

Incorporating the authors’ pioneering work in the ecosystem health field, this book demonstrates the potential of the agroecosystem health paradigm as a framework in the decision-making processes of agricultural communities in a tropical highlands area.

Table of Contents

General Introduction
Global Context
Sustainability
Agroecosystem Health
The Kiambu Agroecosystem
Potential Indicators
Justification
Design and Implementation of an Adaptive, Integrated Approach to Health and Sustainability in a Smallholder-Dominated Agroecosystem
Research Strategy and Methods
Results
Discussion
Community Participation and the Integration of Agroecosystem Health and Sustainability Concerns into Practical Decision Making
Process and Methods
Results
Discussion
Use of Systems Theory, Directed Graphs, and Pulse Process Models in an Adaptive Approach to Agroecosystem Health and Sustainability
Process and Methods
Results
Discussion
Soft System Methodology in the Management of Agroecosystem Health and Sustainability Concerns of a Tropical Highlands Agroecosystem
Process and Methods
Results
Discussion
Development of Health and Sustainability Indicators for a Tropical Highlands Agroecosystem
Process and Methods
Results
Discussion
An Assessment of Health and Sustainability of a Smallholder-Dominated Tropical Highlands Ecosystem
Process and Methods
Results
Discussion
General Discussion
Synopsis
Sustainability
Agroecosystem Health
Kiambu Agroecosystem
Health and Sustainability Assessment
Summary
General Conclusions
Appendix 1: Questionnaire Used to Carry Out a Census of All the Land-Use Units in the Village
Appendix 2: Questionnaire Used for Indicator Measurement at the Land-Use Unit Level
Index
An Introduction and References appear in each chapter.

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Reviews

From the Foreword
“This welcome volume on agricultural sustainability … is authored by innovative scientists well-known in their fields … It is clearly written and provides a great deal of practical information as well as addresses theoretical and systems issues in depth.”
—Clive A. Edwards, Ohio State University, Columbus, USA