International Colloquium: The Future of Food and Challenges for Agriculture in the 21st Century

24 ဧပြီလ 2017

Debates about who, how and with what social, economic and ecological implications we will feed the world.

24 ဧပြီလ 2017 to 26 ဧပြီလ 2017
Congress Palace. Vitoria Gasteiz. Álava. Basque Country. Europe.
  • Initiatives in Critical Agrarian Studies (ICAS)

The 7th Initiatives in Critical Agrarian Studies (ICAS) Colloquium will take place on April 24-26, 2017 in Vitoria-Gasteiz (Basque Country). The colloquium is organised in collaboration with the Basque farmers union EHNE Bizkaia and Etxalde, a regional movement for sustainable agriculture and food sovereignty.

The ICAS International Colloquium is a platform for critical dialogue around agrarian studies, among engaged academics, activists and policy practitioners. This Colloquium will be carried out in the frame of the agenda towards the 7th International Conference that La Vía Campesina will celebrate in the Basque Country in July 2017.

The organising committee for the Colloqium includes researchers and fellows from The Transnational Institute (TNI), along with La Via Campesina and the Institute for Social Studies. TNI staff and fellows will also participate in the Colloqium as speakers and contributors.

In the tradition of the ICAS Colloquium series, this event will bring together leading scholars and activists from all over the world, as well as young activists, students and researchers.

With the intention of deepening our analysis of the food system in the coming decades, this event will address various dimensions of food and delve into the realities and challenges to provide insights into the future. The issue of food is complex and touches many aspects of our lives.

This colloquium aims to be a space to discuss this complexity and bring together perspectives from different sectors (the peasantry, fishing, public institutions and research, etc.) to enrich the debate. The challenge of how to feed the world is a historical debate, but the novelty of this meeting is intended to go beyond the mere question whether it is possible or not.

Here, the idea is to go into the details of how it is being done at present; what practices are currently taking place and with what consequences; how is the vision of food sovereignty being put into practice; what can we learn from the interrelated experiences with activism and research on the food system that seek to define our future path.

Given the gravity of the economic, ecological and social crises shaping and being shaped by the global food system today, it is necessary to analyze the current context. However, the goal in this colloquium is to channel the force of these analyzes to better understand the steps we need to take into the future.

Food sovereignty is the most developed proposal for an alternative food system to date, but there is still much to understand about how to 'operationalize' the concept. Ten years have passed since the declaration of Nyeleni where the six pillars of food sovereignty were articulated, marking an important step towards putting ideas into practice.

These six pillars have helped bring the concept to life and have shown the breadth of topics and areas involved in the transformation that La Via Campesina and allies are proposing with this idea.

This colloquium will take up these issues, according to the thematic axes laid out below.

In each axis the focus will always remain on the concrete steps that are being taken towards transformation.

Thematic Axes

  •     Capitalism, class, agriculture, livestock and fisheries.
  •     Climate Change and convergences.
  •     Models of development in the context of flows of capital, goods and people.
  •     Access and control over the means of production.
  •     Consumption, health, nutrition and the Right to Food.
  •     Movements for Food Sovereignty.

More information on the Colloquium website
* Languages of this event: Basque, Spanish, English. Written papers will be accepted in any of the three, but they will not be translated.