Growing on (Un)common Ground: Motivations and Locational Choice of Urban Agriculture Entrepreneurs

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Growing on (Un)common Ground: Motivations and Locational Choice of Urban Agriculture Entrepreneurs

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Masters Thesis
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Publication 2-year master student thesis
Title Growing on (Un)common Ground: Motivations and Locational Choice of Urban Agriculture Entrepreneurs
Author Schreiber, Kerstin
Date 2018
English abstract
Urban agriculture in post-industrial countries is commonly represented in form of shared community gardens or individual gardening lots. However, within the last years, an increasing number of commercial urban farming enterprises around the globe have started their operations. While recreational projects have received much attention, the commercial and entrepreneurial remained mainly uninvestigated. Using a grounded theory approach, this explorative dissertation aims to contribute to an understanding of farming as a new urban profession and the motivation of commercial urban farmers (CUFs) to grow in the city, rather than the countryside. Based on ten semi-standardized in-depth interviews, this study reveals first, that CUFs merge the commonly rural occupation of farming and their desire for autonomic labor with the urban lifestyle as self-made growers, without significant relevant personal or educational background in farming, using alternative growing techniques. Second, the study finds two CUF categories: urbanists, who perceive themselves as actors in sustainable urban development and pursue urban growing activities to contribute to this target; and bargainers, who regard urban growing as a means to an end to progress to small-scale rural agriculture. This suggests that CUFs must engage in inner negotiations between their economic capabilities, the geographic location, and the more society oriented visions they commit themselves to. This research conceptualizes urban farming as tool to fulfill not only food and sustainability goals, but that could also function as basis for sustainable small-scale growing in the countryside.
Publisher Malmö universitet/Kultur och samhälle
Language eng (iso)
Subject urban agriculture
commercial urban farming
location-based entrepreneurship
ecopreneurship
grounded theory
motivation
Handle http://hdl.handle.net/2043/25522 Permalink to this page
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