Farmer research networks & ‘Agroecological X-rays’ in the South American Andes

In mid July, ALC director Ernesto Méndez joined Maria Rosa Yumbla and Ronald Herrera, PhD students at the Universidad Pablo de Olavide (Spain), at the Andes Community of Practice (CoP) meeting of the Collaborative Crop Research Program (CCRP), in Arequipa, Perú. Yumbla and Herrera are conducting PhD studies in agroecology, and working on an ALC project on farmer research networks and participatory action research (PAR) with smallholder peanut farmers in Bolivia. At the CoP, Yumbla and Herrera presented their PAR work with farmers on developing an ‘agroecological x-ray’ to assess the state of their farms and discuss a transition towards agroecology. The term agroecological x-ray was coined by a participating farmer. The CoP included about 14 projects from Peru, Ecuador and Bolivia supported by the CCRP, a program funded by the McKnight Foundation.

Yumbla, Méndez & Herrera attending the CoP meeting in Arequipa Perú
Yumbla and Herrera discuss results of the agroecological x-ray exercises with peanut farmers in Bolivia

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