Science and Politics

By Peter M. Rosset and Miguel A. Altieri  

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Our global food system is largely based on unsustainable industrial agricultural practices, is a major source of greenhouse gas emissions, is controlled by a handful of large corporations and produces unhealthy food. Agroecology is a solution to these increasingly urgent problems.

After decades of being dismissed by mainstream institutions and defended in obscurity by grassroots movements and farmers, agroecology is suddenly in fashion. The UN Food and Agriculture Organization, government ministries and even corporations are jumping on the bandwagon. But, are they pushing the same agroecology as developed by pioneering farmers and scientists and pushed for by peasant social movements, or are they seeking to co-opt the concept and give it different content? Rosset and Altieri, two of the world’s leading agroecologists, outline the principles, history and currents of agroecological thought, the scientific evidence for agroecology, the social aspects of bringing agroecology to scale and the contemporary politics of agroecology.

“Not only deftly presents the state of agroecology today, but also inadvertently highlights important gaps that set the agenda for new research and conceptualizations.”

— Journal of Peasant Studies

  • Food Politics
  • ISBN: 9781552669754
  • October 2017
  • 160 Pages
  • $19.00
  • For sale in Canada
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  • Not for sale in Rest of world

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  • Experiences demonstrate that agroecological farming can be two to three times more productive compared to monocultural ‘intensive’ farming. Agroecology has nothing to do with backwardness.

    — Boaventura Monjane (2019): Agroecology: Science and Politics, The Journal of Peasant Studies, DOI: 10.1080/03066150.2019.1615184 (full review)


  • Series Editors’ Foreword
  • Acknowledgements
  • Introduction: Agroecology at a Crossroads
  • The Principles of Agroecology
  • History and Current Agroecological Thought
  • The Evidence for Agroecology
  • Bringing Agroecology to Scale
  • The Politics of Agroecology
  • Index


  • Peter M. Rosset

    Peter M. Rosset is a professor of agroecology at El Colegio de la Frontera Sur (ECOSUR Advanced Studies Institute) in Chiapas, Mexico, and CAPES visiting professor in the Geography Department of the Universidade Federal de Ceará (UFC) in Brazil. He is also co-coordinator of the Land Research Action Network (LRAN).

  • Miguel A. Altieri

    Miguel A. Altieri is emeritus professor of agroecology at the University of California at Berkeley. He is the founder and past president of the Latin American Scientific Society for Agroecology (SOCLA).

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