42 research outputs found

    Latin colonization in Italy before the end of the Second Punic War:Colonial communities and cultural change

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    Voordat Rome een wereldrijk stichtte, veroverde het eerst Italië. De belangrijkste militaire successen werden geboekt in de late vierde en vroege derde eeuw v. Chr., waarna Rome lange tijd de touwtjes in handen hield via een combinatie van direct bestuur en verdragen met geallieerden. In dit systeem speelden door Rome gestichte kolonies een belangrijke rol als militaire steunpunten en (grotendeels) betrouwbare bondgenoten. Dit proefschrift onderzoekt hoe deze kolonies een bijdrage leverden aan culturele veranderingen in deze formatieve periode van de Romeinse geschiedenis. In lijn met recent onderzoek bestrijdt het de visie dat de kolonies simpelweg Romeinse cultuur verspreidden. Op basis van onderzoek naar een breed spectrum aan bronmateriaal (geschreven bronnen, inscripties, munten, archeologisch materiaal) brengt het proefschift de verschillende contacten in kaart die de kolonies beïnvloedden, en onderzoekt het hoe bestaande culturele modellen in de kolonies werden aangepast en nieuwe betekenissen kregen. Op deze manier wordt een dynamischer beeld van de kolonies geschetst: zij opereerden grotendeels zelfstandig in een complexe culturele wereld, en leverden op die manier een actieve bijdrage aan de culturele vorming van Italië onder de heerschappij van Rome

    Adaptive decision-making under conditions of uncertainty: the case of farming in the Volta delta, Ghana

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    Farming in Ghana’s Volta delta is increasingly affected by variability in rainfall conditions and changes in land-use patterns. Under such socio-ecological conditions, little is known about farmers’ decision-making in response to uncertainties in uncertain rainfall conditions. To fill this gap and add to the literature on adaptive decision-making, we addressed the central question: what are the existing patterns of farming decision-making under uncertain rainfall conditions, and which decision-making strategies are adaptive? We developed an adaptive decision-making framework to investigate the behavior of farmers under variable rainfall conditions in Ghana’s Volta delta in the Ada East District. We conducted 5 interviews with agricultural extension agents, 44 in-depth interviews and 4 focus group discussion with farmers. Subsequently, we interviewed a sub-selection of 32 farmers. Findings of the study shows that farmers carry out different decision-making patterns in response to the variable rainfall conditions. We distinguished six strategies: three based on flexibility and three based on robustness. Flexible adaptive decision-making strategies are switching dates for sowing seeds through wait-and-see or delay strategy, muddling through the farming season with the application of various options and alternative irrigation strategies. Robust adaptive decision-making strategies are portfolio strategy of transplanting seedlings in batches, selection of robust (hardy) crops, and intercropping or diversification. Based on how farmers select strategies in response to uncertainty in rainfall conditions, we argue that some decision-making strategies are more adaptive than others. Findings of this study are relevant for the design and implementation of climate related agricultural projects.</p

    The Struggle of Farming Systems in Europe:Looking for Explanations through the Lens of Resilience

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    Many farming systems in Europe are struggling to respond to accumulating economic, environmental, institutional and social challenges. From a resilience perspective, they need three distinct capacities to continue delivering products, income and public goods: robustness, adaptability and transformability. Based on a structured assessment of the resilience capacities of 11 farming systems across Europe we conclude that three mismatches likely contribute to their struggles. First, while farming systems comprised many non‐farm actors, resilience strategies largely focused on farms and their robustness, neglecting other options and opportunities. Second, while the delivery of public goods such as biodiversity and attractive landscapes was seen as a major concern, most resilience strategies focused on the delivery of private goods. Third, while in many farming systems actors expressed the need for transformation, farming systems’ capacity to transform was perceived as low. Building on the differentiated concept of resilience, findings can guide policymakers, farming system actors, consumers and societal interest groups to identify pathways towards more resilient agricultural systems in Europe

    Improving the resilience‐enabling capacity of the Common Agricultural Policy: policy recommendations for more resilient EU farming systems

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    One of the aims of the post‐2020 Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) is to improve the resilience of Europe's farming systems. The CAP of the budget period 2014–2020, however, has insufficiently supported the resilience of farming systems. The ongoing CAP reform process offers an appropriate opportunity to integrate a broader perspective on resilience in the CAP. We therefore propose a set of policy recommendations on how to improve the capability of the CAP to support more fully the resilience (i.e. robustness, adaptability and transformability) of farming systems in the EU. The policy recommendations are based on a comparative analysis of six national co‐design workshops with stakeholders and a final EU‐level workshop with Brussels‐based experts. We concluded three key lessons about the CAP's influence on resilience: (1) resilience challenges, needs and policy effects are context‐specific; (2) resilience capacities are complementary, but trade‐offs between robustness, adaptability and transformability occur at the level of policies and due to budget competition; (3) there is a need for a coordinated long‐term vision for Europe's agriculture, which is difficult to achieve through the bargaining processes associated with a CAP reform. We propose specific policy recommendations that could contribute to a better balance between policies that support robustness, adaptability and transformability of Europe's farming systems

    Impact of COVID-19 on farming systems in Europe through the lens of resilience thinking

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    CONTEXT Resilience is the ability to deal with shocks and stresses, including the unknown and previously unimaginable, such as the Covid-19 crisis. OBJECTIVE This paper assesses (i) how different farming systems were exposed to the crisis, (ii) which resilience capacities were revealed and (iii) how resilience was enabled or constrained by the farming systems’ social and institutional environment. METHODS The 11 farming systems included have been analysed since 2017. This allows a comparison of pre-Covid-19 findings and the Covid-19 crisis. Pre-Covid findings are from the SURE-Farm systematic sustainability and resilience assessment. For Covid-19 a special data collection was carried out during the early stage of lockdowns. RESULTS AND CONCLUSIONS Our case studies found limited impact of Covid-19 on the production and delivery of food and other agricultural products. This was due to either little exposure or the agile activation of robustness capacities of the farming systems in combination with an enabling institutional environment. Revealed capacities were mainly based on already existing connectedness among farmers and more broadly in value chains. Across cases, the experience of the crisis triggered reflexivity about the operation of the farming systems. Recurring topics were the need for shorter chains, more fairness towards farmers, and less dependence on migrant workers. However, actors in the farming systems and the enabling environment generally focused on the immediate issues and gave little real consideration to long-term implications and challenges. Hence, adaptive or transformative capacities were much less on display than coping capacities. The comparison with pre-Covid findings mostly showed similarities. If challenges, such as shortage of labour, already played before the crisis, they persisted during the crisis. Also, the eminent role of resilience attributes was confirmed. In cases with high connectedness and diversity we found that these system characteristics importantly contributed to dealing with the crisis. Also the focus on coping capacities was already visible before the crisis. We are not sure yet whether the focus on short-term robustness just reflects the higher visibility and urgency of shocks compared to slow processes that undermine or threaten important system functions, or whether they betray an imbalance in resilience capacities at the expense of adaptability and transformability. SIGNIFICANCE Our analysis indicates that if transformations are required, e.g. to respond to concerns about transnational value chains and future pandemics from zoonosis, the transformative capacity of many farming systems needs to be actively enhanced through an enabling environment
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