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Taking context into account in urban agriculture governance: Casestudies of Warsaw (Poland) and Ghent (Belgium)

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This article explores the role of local particularism in relation to the global interest in urban agriculture (UA). A growing movement is advocating UA, but future prospects are limited by variability, unclear expectations, vague responsibilities and leadership in the UA movement. We wonder whether the poor understanding of UA governance is associated with a public discourse and academic literature that too easily adopt the generic and universally claimed benefits. We argue here that uncritical enthusiasm results in an overly instrumental approach to governance of UA with a main focus on stimulating formal (e.g., policy making) and informal advocacy (e.g., civic engagement in UA). We do not deny the importance of formal and informal advocacy in UA development, but rather claim that the potential of UA needs a more nuanced analysis. Study of the interplay between UA advocacy and a city’s contextual characteristics is a worthy pursuit, as it may provide significant and more profound explanations for the divergence observed in UA developments. Case studies performed in Warsaw (Poland) and Ghent (Belgium) serve to illustrate the importance of context. The results suggest that neither case is likely to benefit from a governance strategy that only stimulates greater advocacy and institutional support. The inclusion of city-specific needs, opportunities and pitfalls of UA in the governance strategy can help to move UA toward its full potential. We suggest a policy-making strategy for UA that expands beyond the realm of food production alone. Ultimately, the aim is to steer away from assessing (and critiquing) UA solely against the backdrop of these generic success factors.
Content may be subject to copyright.
Land
Use
Policy
56
(2016)
16–26
Contents
lists
available
at
ScienceDirect
Land
Use
Policy
jo
ur
nal
ho
me
pag
e:
www.elsevier.com/locate/landusepol
Taking
context
into
account
in
urban
agriculture
governance:
Case
studies
of
Warsaw
(Poland)
and
Ghent
(Belgium)
Charlotte
Provéa,b,,
Joost
Desseina,b,d,
Michiel
de
Kroma,c,d
aSocial
Sciences
Unit,
Institute
of
Agriculture
and
Fisheries
Research,
Burg,
Van
Gansberghelaan
115,
bus
2,
9820
Merelbeke,
Belgium
bDepartment
of
Agricultural
Economics,
Fac.
of
Bioscience
Engineering,
Ghent
University,
Coupure
Links
653,
9000
Gent,
Belgium
cDepartment
of
Sociology,
Fac.
of
Social
and
Political
Sciences,
Ghent
University,
Korte
Meer
5,
9000
Gent,
Belgium
dCentre
for
Sustainable
Development,
Fac.
of
Social
and
Political
Sciences,
Ghent
University,
Poel
16,
9000
Gent,
Belgium
a
r
t
i
c
l
e
i
n
f
o
Article
history:
Received
21
December
2015
Received
in
revised
form
22
April
2016
Accepted
24
April
2016
Keywords:
Urban
agriculture
Governance
Sustainable
urban
development
Context
Case
studies
Poland
Belgium
a
b
s
t
r
a
c
t
This
article
explores
the
role
of
local
particularism
in
relation
to
the
global
interest
in
urban
agriculture
(UA).
A
growing
movement
is
advocating
UA,
but
future
prospects
are
limited
by
variability,
unclear
expectations,
vague
responsibilities
and
leadership
in
the
UA
movement.
We
wonder
whether
the
poor
understanding
of
UA
governance
is
associated
with
a
public
discourse
and
academic
literature
that
too
easily
adopt
the
generic
and
universally
claimed
benefits.
We
argue
here
that
uncritical
enthusiasm
results
in
an
overly
instrumental
approach
to
governance
of
UA
with
a
main
focus
on
stimulating
formal
(e.g.,
policy
making)
and
informal
advocacy
(e.g.,
civic
engagement
in
UA).
We
do
not
deny
the
importance
of
formal
and
informal
advocacy
in
UA
development,
but
rather
claim
that
the
potential
of
UA
needs
a
more
nuanced
analysis.
Study
of
the
interplay
between
UA
advocacy
and
a
city’s
contextual
characteristics
is
a
worthy
pursuit,
as
it
may
provide
significant
and
more
profound
explanations
for
the
divergence
observed
in
UA
developments.
Case
studies
performed
in
Warsaw
(Poland)
and
Ghent
(Belgium)
serve
to
illustrate
the
importance
of
context.
The
results
suggest
that
neither
case
is
likely
to
benefit
from
a
governance
strategy
that
only
stimulates
greater
advocacy
and
institutional
support.
The
inclusion
of
city-specific
needs,
opportunities
and
pitfalls
of
UA
in
the
governance
strategy
can
help
to
move
UA
toward
its
full
potential.
We
suggest
a
policy-making
strategy
for
UA
that
expands
beyond
the
realm
of
food
production
alone.
Ultimately,
the
aim
is
to
steer
away
from
assessing
(and
critiquing)
UA
solely
against
the
backdrop
of
these
generic
success
factors.
©
2016
The
Authors.
Published
by
Elsevier
Ltd.
This
is
an
open
access
article
under
the
CC
BY
license
(http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/).
1.
Introduction
In
recent
years,
the
concept
of
urban
agriculture
(UA)
has
caught
the
attention
of
city
authorities,
citizens,
academics
and
the
media
across
the
globe
(Dimitri
et
al.,
2015;
Mansfield
and
Mendes,
2012;
Morgan,
2014).
Although
food
production
initiatives
in
and
around
urban
areas
are
not
new
(e.g.
wartime
gardens),
the
recent
interest
in
UA
reflects
a
reinvention
of
the
concept
in
which
new
purposes
are
assigned
to
UA
(Wortman
and
Lovell,
2013).
The
attractiveness
of
UA
lies
in
its
potential
response
to
a
range
of
urban
issues
that
are
often
linked
to
the
overarching
goal
of
sustainable
cities
(FAO,
2007;
Lovell,
2010;
Mendes
et
al.,
2008;
Mougeot,
2006,
p.10).
As
Corresponding
author
at:
Social
Sciences
Unit,
Institute
of
Agriculture
and
Fish-
eries
Research,
Burg,
Van
Gansberghelaan
115,
bus
2,
9820
Merelbeke,
Belgium.
E-mail
addresses:
charlotte.prove@ilvo.vlaanderen.be
(C.
Prové),
joost.dessein@ilvo.vlaanderen.be
(J.
Dessein),
michiel.dekrom@ugent.be
(M.d.
Krom).
a
consequence
of
its
popularity,
a
narrative
on
UA
has
emerged
in
popular
discourse
that
is
both
uncritically
positive
as
well
as
decontextualized
(Lawson,
2005;
Classens,
2015;
Mares
and
Alkon,
2011).
This
narrative
has
been
eagerly
adopted
by
the
media
and
online
platforms,
with
headlines
such
as
Farming
and
the
city:
How
local-grown
agriculture
can
feed
the
worlds
urban
areas1(website
of
Milan
World
Expo
2015),
There
will
be
billions
more
hungry
people
in
2050.
Growing
our
food
on
vertical
farms
or
under
radical
new
lighting
systems
may
be
key
to
ensuring
they
have
enough
to
eat2(BBC)
or
Urban
Farming
Is
Growing
a
Green
Future”3(National
Geographic).
1http://www.expo2015.org/magazine/en/sustainability/farming-and-the-city–
how-local-grown-agriculture-can-feed-the-world-s-urban-areas.html.
2http://www.bbc.com/future/story/20130603-city-farms-to-feed-a-hungry-
world.
3http://environment.nationalgeographic.com/environment/photos/urban-
farming/#/earth-day-urban-farming-new-york-rooftop
51631
600x450.jpg.
http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.landusepol.2016.04.025
0264-8377/©
2016
The
Authors.
Published
by
Elsevier
Ltd.
This
is
an
open
access
article
under
the
CC
BY
license
(http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/).
C.
Prové
et
al.
/
Land
Use
Policy
56
(2016)
16–26
17
The
assumption
that
UA
is
a
valuable
goal
in
itself
often
results
in
an
instrumental
approach
to
governance.
UA
advocates
tend
to
consider
the
actual
development
of
UA
policies
and
projects
to
be
of
greater
importance
than
the
precise
form,
objectives
and
impacts
of
such
initiatives
(Cohen
and
Reynolds,
2014;
DeLind,
2015;
McClintock,
2014;
Smit,
2016).
Policy
responses
at
various
levels
generally
situate
UA
in
the
field
of
food
and
agriculture,
with
a
strong
focus
on
preservation
of
farmland
and
the
supply
of
local
food
(Cohen,
2012).
The
European
Commission
launched
a
cam-
paign
entitled
Europes
Common
Agricultural
Policy:
Taking
care
of
our
roots
to
promote
the
link
between
urban
dwellers
and
agricul-
ture
(European
Commission,
2014).
Under
the
societal
challenges
priority
in
the
Horizon
2020
program
(2014–2020)
“Food
secu-
rity,
sustainable
agriculture,
marine,
maritime
and
inland
water
research,
and
the
bio-economy”,
urban
agriculture
has
become
a
Food,
Agriculture
and
Biotechnologies
(FAB)
priority
(Arnold,
2013).
Furthermore,
all
measures
within
the
Common
Agricul-
ture
Policy
(CAP,
2014–2020)
will
be
applicable
to
farmers
located
within
urban
and
peri-urban
areas
who
fulfill
the
eligibility
criteria
(European
Parliamentary
Research
Service,
2014).
At
the
interna-
tional
level,
the
Food
and
Agriculture
Organization
(FAO)
assists
national
and
city
governments
in
optimizing
policies
and
support
for
UA
(FAO,
2015).
But
the
benefits
of
UA
are
not
limited
to
food
production
alone:
it
also
provides
green,
open
spaces;
mediates
the
urban
heat
island
effect;
helps
to
manage
storm
water;
enhances
food
literacy;
improves
health
through
stimulating
physical
activity
and
consumption
of
fruits
and
vegetables;
integrates
traditionally
excluded
social
and
cultural
groups;
builds
community;
recon-
nects
agricultural
sectors
with
urban
populations;
and
facilitates
participation
and
democracy
in
the
food
system
(e.g.,
Draper
and
Freedman,
2010;
Feenstra
et
al.,
1999;
Hodgson
et
al.,
2011;
Howe
et
al.,
2005;
Lovell,
2010;
Nugent,
2000;
Smit
and
Bailkey,
2006;
Van
Veenhuizen,
2006).
The
above
examples
clearly
show
how
an
uncritical
popular
discourse
on
UA
and
a
policy
focus
on
food
pro-
duction
endangers
the
diversity,
multi-functionality
and
richness
that
characterizes
the
UA
movement.
The
first
step
to
taking
this
diversity
into
account
is
generating
an
in-depth
understanding
of
the
policy
implications.
Current
research
easily
adopts
the
generic,
positive
narrative
and
the
instrumental
approach
to
governance
(Classens,
2015;
Lawson,
2005).
In
general,
these
studies
(implic-
itly)
start
from
the
assumption
that
UA
initiatives
are
inherently
benevolent.
They
ask
how
bottom-up
and
top-down
processes
can
stimulate
the
development
of
UA
initiatives
by
examining
how
civic
engagement
(e.g.,
DeLind,
2002;
Kaufman
and
Bailkey,
2000;
Levkoe,
2006)
and
urban
planning
and
policy-making
foster
growth
in
UA
initiatives
(e.g.,
Cohen,
2012;
Certomà
and
Notteboom,
2015;
Halloran
and
Magid,
2013;
Hardman
and
Larkhman,
2014;
Lovell,
2010;
Pearson
et
al.,
2010;
Pothukuchi
and
Kaufman,
1999;
La
Rosa
et
al.,
2014).
In
accordance
with
this
assumption,
insight
into
UA
governance,
defined
in
terms
of
arrangements
that
effectively
stimulate,
facilitate
and
coordinate
UA
advocacy,
becomes
key
to
understanding
how
UA
developments
can
be
successfully
advanced
(Dubbeling
et
al.,
2010;
Huang
and
Drescher,
2015;
Pearson
et
al.,
2010).
Without
underestimating
the
merits
of
these
academic
approaches
or
seeking
to
contradict
them,
in
this
article
and
in
agreement
with
notable
exceptions
(Certomà,
2015;
McClintock,
2014;
Tornaghi,
2014),
we
seek
to
critically
discuss
the
assump-
tion
that
UA
developments
are
inherently
desirable
and
are
mainly
shaped
by
UA
stakeholders’
advocacy.
In
particular,
we
address
the
current
lack
of
academic
consideration
of
the
city-specific
material
and
socio-political
contexts
in
which
UA
advocacy
and
develop-
ments
are
situated.
We
argue
that
when
these
city-specific
contexts
are
taken
into
account,
differences
in
UA
developments
in
different
cities
can
be
better
understood,
and
arguably,
a
different
approach
to
UA
governance
including
broader
policy-making
is
needed.
We
empirically
substantiate
our
argument
by
discussing
UA
dynamics
in
the
cities
of
Warsaw
(Poland)
and
Ghent
(Belgium).
Remarkably,
similar
types
of
stakeholders
advocate
UA
in
these
cities,
but
UA
developments
take
on
different
shapes
and
content
in
the
two
cities,
largely
due
to
different
contextual
dynamics.
These
findings
indicate
that
the
meaning
of
UA
governance
is
not
univer-
sal
or
generic
as
the
understanding
of
UA
as
inherently
benevolent
suggests
but
is
rather
dependent
on
city-specific
circumstances.
Below,
we
continue
by
explaining
our
conceptual
and
method-
ological
framework.
We
then
empirically
explore
UA
developments
in
Warsaw
and
Ghent
by
making
an
inventory
of
UA
initiatives
in
these
cities,
and
by
discussing
how
UA
advocates
and
context-
specific
characteristics
interactively
constitute
these
initiatives.
We
conclude
by
reflecting
on
the
implications
of
our
findings
in
understanding
the
potential
and
the
pitfalls
of
UA
developments
in
different
cities,
and
what
UA
governance
entails
by
discussing
socio-politically
and
spatially
embedded
public
policies
for
UA
that
go
beyond
narrowing
UA
to
food
production.
2.
The
role
of
local
particularism
in
the
governance
of
UA
The
complexity
of
the
UA
advocacy
movement,
involving
dif-
ferent
(state,
market,
civil
society)
actors
operating
at
different
governance
levels
and
advancing
different
(sustainability)
goals,
makes
novel
demands
on
urban
policy-making
and
planning
pro-
cesses.
In
light
of
this
complexity
and
uncertainty,
scholars
have
pointed
out
the
need
to
identify
governance
arrangements
and
tools
that
can
orchestrate
the
new
creative
multi-actor,
multi-
level,
multi-purpose
and
multi-sector
trajectories
(Healey,
2004).
As
Hajer
and
Wagenaar
(2003,
p.3)
explain,
governments
often
face
“open-ended,
unusual,
ad
hoc
arrangements”
when
seeking
to
further
sustainability
as
a
goal
(e.g.,
Brodhag,
1999;
Block
et
al.,
2013).
In
many
cases,
city
governments
focus
on
single
projects
or
experiments,
when
implementing
UA
policies,
and
support
for
UA
is
given
shape
through
trial
and
error,
instigating
lengthy
learning
processes
on
how
to
support
and
implement
UA
initiatives.
Strate-
gic
decisions
on
UA
are
mostly
taken
within
a
governance
setting
in
which
a
convergence
of
circumstances
determines
the
policy-
making
process
(Kingdon,
1984),
and
decisions
are
only
reached
incrementally
(Block
et
al.,
2012;
Mintzberg
et
al.,
1998;
Teisman,
2000).
Explicit
or
clear-cut
governance
frameworks
for
UA
cur-
rently
remain
absent,
incoherent
or
unclear
(Lovell,
2010).
In
many
cases,
policy
making
marginalizes
UA
as
food
production
without
the
consideration
of
other
relevant
policy
domains
that
embrace
different
aspects
of
UA.
We
agree
that
an
academic
focus
on
UA
governance
is
needed
in
areas
such
as
urban
planning
and
policy-making,
participa-
tory
processes,
civic
engagement,
and
the
institutionalization
of
UA
decision-making
processes
(Pearson
et
al.,
2010;
Rosol,
2010).
However,
we
assert
that
governance
involves
more
than
accounting
for
the
diversity
of
needs,
objectives
and
strategies
of
UA
stakehold-
ers
(Pierre,
2000,
p.
3–4),
or
identifying
and
adopting
best
practices
and
successful
governance
tools
(Mendes
et
al.,
2008).
In
accor-
dance
with
the
approach
of
Pollitt
(2013),
this
paper
makes
a
novel
contribution
to
the
governance
of
UA
by
considering
context
as
a
co-constitutive
factor.
The
wealth
of
case
studies
on
UA
in
a
single
country,
city,
neighborhood
or
site
clearly
indicates
that
variations
in
a
given
context
sculpt
the
shape
and
content
of
UA
developments.
Nevertheless,
academic
literature
on
the
governance
of
UA
often
either
bypasses
or
merely
describes
the
context
in
which
UA
devel-
opments
unfold
(Cohen,
2012;
Garnett,
2000;
Padgham
et
al.,
2015)
rather
than
considering
it
to
be
a
constituting
factor
(for
notable
exceptions,
see
McClintock,
2015;
Lovell,
2010).
We
suggest
that
18
C.
Prové
et
al.
/
Land
Use
Policy
56
(2016)
16–26
the
interconnectedness
of
stakeholders
and
city-specific
contexts
creates
complex
dynamics
that
cannot
be
adequately
explained
by
focusing
on
one
or
the
other:
they
have
to
be
considered
simultane-
ously.
Such
an
exploration
requires
insights
into
both
stakeholder
support
for
UA
developments
and
the
broader
social,
political
and
material
context
in
which
UA
is
being
advocated.
This
approach
enables
us
to
make
sense
of
the
vital
relationship
between
the
particularism
and
micro-politics
at
the
city
level
and
the
homogenizing
effect
of
globalization
that
informs
the
univer-
salized,
generically
positive
narrative
on
UA.
In
doing
so,
we
suggest
that
the
prospects
for
governance
of
UA
cannot
be
assessed
without
taking
the
specificity
of
city
contexts
into
account
(Andrews,
2010).
A
governance
structure
that
works
in
one
context
might
not
work
in
another.
By
making
conceptual
space
to
explore
the
role
of
context
in
UA
developments,
we
also
aim
to
address
a
growing
academic
critique
on
the
understanding
of
localized
food
production
as
sustainable
or
“good”
in
itself
(Born
and
Purcell,
2006;
Dupuis
and
Goodman,
2005;
Guthman,
2004;
Hinrichs,
2003;
Reynolds,
2014;
Winter,
2003).
We
argue
that
by
uncritically
adopting
a
generically
positive
UA
narrative,
actors
may
unwittingly
help
to
perpetuate
inequali-
ties
within
city-level
social
and
political
structures.
In
accordance
with
Pierre
and
Peters
(2000),
we
argue
that
a
proper
considera-
tion
of
context
brings
more
critical
insights
into
UA
governance,
as
it
highlights
how
local
inequalities,
exclusionary
mechanisms
and
injustices
are
overcome
or
(re-)produced
(González
and
Healey,
2005).
Before
identifying
contextual
factors
that
affect
UA
develop-
ments,
the
notion
of
context
needs
to
be
operationalized
(Meyer
and
Minkoff,
2004).
To
do
so,
we
have
made
the
following
concep-
tual
choices.
First,
while
we
acknowledge
that
different
governance
levels
(e.g.,
international,
national,
community,
and
project-levels)
affect
UA
developments,
we
have
chosen
to
focus
on
governance
dynamics
that
play
out
on
the
urban
scale.
In
doing
so,
we
aim
to
include
specificities
of
urban
contexts,
which
can
be
easily
over-
looked
when
uncritically
adopting
the
positive
narrative
that
is
especially
strong
at
the
international
and
national
levels.
At
the
same
time,
we
aim
to
steer
clear
of
adding
to
the
empirically
strong,
but
often
under-theorized
discussions
about
single
UA
projects
or
experiments
that
aim
to
identify
“best
practice”
on
how
to
support
and
implement
UA
initiatives.
Second,
we
face
the
challenge
of
identifying
a
series
of
stable
contextual
characteristics
within
the
urban
context
that
can
be
held
as
a
constant
for
comparison
purposes
(Meyer
and
Minkoff,
2004),
allowing
us
to
identify
“differences
that
make
a
difference”
(Bakker
and
Bridge,
2006;
Rucht,
1996).
In
the
case
of
UA,
creating
space
for
urban
food
growing
is
a
key
aspect
of
governance
processes
(Roth
et
al.,
2015;
Taylor
and
Lovell,
2012)
and
the
opportunities
for
cre-
ating
such
space
depend
to
an
important
degree
on
the
existing
spatial
layout
of
a
city.
These
material
or
geographical
character-
istics,
which
are
the
result
of
specific
socio-historical
patterns
of
spatial
development,
are
likely
to
differ
strongly
between
cities.
We
categorize
these
characteristics
under
“urban
layout”.
Further-
more,
we
agree
with
McClintock
(2015)
that
the
interpretations
of
and
attitudes
toward
the
material
city
context,
as
well
as
the
notion
of
growing
food
in
the
city,
are
themselves
also
grounded
in
a
socio-historical
and
geographical
context.
These
interpreta-
tions
and
attitudes
are
likely
to
result
in
different
public
stances
regarding
use
of
urban
space
for
UA,
which
we
categorize
under
the
heading
of
“perceptions
and
attitudes
toward
use
of
urban
space”.
These
interpretations
and
attitudes
are
also
likely
to
inform
and,
in
turn,
be
affected
by
the
existing
broader
political
frameworks
in
which
UA
policies
and
strategies
are
embedded.
We
label
these
“political
climate”
(cf.
Strategic
Urban
Planning
(SUP)).
In
sum,
we
discern
three
analytically
distinct
categories
of
city-specific
con-
Table
1
Structural
characteristics
of
Warsaw
and
Ghent.
Warsaw
Ghent
Capital
of
Country
Province
Population
1,726,581a251,133e
Population
density
3317
inh/km2a1608
inh/km2e
Total
surface
(ha)
51,700
15,600
Agricultural
land
(ha)
12,243b3132i
Allotment
gardens
(ha)
1770c6,4f
Average
monthly
income
1,191.78
EUR
(2014)d2,224.67
EUR
(2009)g
Unemployment
rate
(%)
4.5
(2014d)
14.3
(2014g)
People
at
risk
of
poverty
(%) 22.9
(2012h) 27.5
(2012h)
aCentral
Office
for
Statistics,
2014.
bStatistical
Office
Warszawa,
2013.
cOffice
of
Architecture
and
Spatial
Planning
of
the
Capital
City
of
Warsaw
City
Hall,
2007.
dStatistical
Office
Warszawa,
2014.
eADSEI,
2014.
fDepartment
of
Agriculture
and
Fisheries,
2007.
gVDAB
(2014).
hEurostat
(2012).
iSum
Research,
2015.
textual
factors:
urban
layout,
political
climate,
and
perceptions
and
attitudes
toward
use
of
urban
space.
Finally,
we
clarify
our
definition
of
UA
and
UA
stakeholders.
A
multitude
of
UA
conceptualizations
exist,
ranging
from
broad
or
ecosystemic
definitions
(Mougeot,
2000;
McClintock,
2014),
to
nar-
row
definitions
that
consider
only
commercial
farming
practices
(Smit
et
al.,
1996).
In
this
paper,
we
align
with
Mougeot’s
def-
inition
and
understand
UA
as
growing
edible
plants
and
raising
livestock
within
urban
and
peri-urban
areas
(FAO,
2015).
In
doing
so,
we
include
a
broad
range
of
possible
meanings
and
perspec-
tives
on
what
UA
may
entail,
and
thus
avoid
an
a
priori
restrictive
focus
on
how
city
contexts
affect
the
shape
of
UA
advocacy
and
developments.
We
define
a
UA
stakeholder
as
an
individual
who
may
act
from
within
a
group
or
organization,
and
who
is
involved
in
and
may
influence
UA
initiatives.
This
definition
includes
all
agents
who,
in
interaction
with
city-specific
contextual
factors,
co-
constitute
the
governance
of
UA
trajectories.
This
includes
public
officers,
local
administrations,
supporting
institutions,
volunteers,
pioneers,
activists,
farmers,
social
workers,
educators,
students,
NGOs,
and
academics.
3.
Research
method
3.1.
Case
study
research
The
case
study
method
is
adopted
because
it
best
fits
our
aim
of
exploring
contextual
conditions
relevant
to
the
complex
and
rela-
tively
novel
phenomenon
under
study,
namely
UA
(Baxter
and
Jack,
2008;
Horton
et
al.,
2004;
Yin,
2003).
Case
studies
produce
empiri-
cal
evidence
in
context-dependent
knowledge
and
provide
reliable
information
for
the
broader
topic
of
UA
governance
(Flyvbjerg,
2006).
However,
they
pose
several
limitations:
(1)
the
data
is
difficult
to
structure
and
exhaust;
(2)
the
findings
cannot
be
gen-
eralized,
and
(3)
such
studies
depend
on
the
knowledge
of
the
interviewees,
but
we
have
countered
this
by
using
various
data
sources
that
allow
triangulation
(Yin,
1993).
To
facilitate
in-depth
understanding
into
governance
of
UA,
we
used
case
study
material
from
two
European
cities:
Warsaw
(Poland)
and
Ghent
(Belgium).
We
selected
these
cities
because
of
their
distinct
socio-historical
backgrounds,
which
are
respectively
based
in
communist
and
social
democratic
pasts.
In
view
of
these
different
pasts,
we
anticipated
that
these
cities
would
likely
differ
in
terms
of
urban
layout,
polit-
ical
climate,
and
public
perceptions
and
attitudes
toward
use
of
urban
space.
These
differences
are
essential
to
meet
our
aim,
namely
to
gain
insight
into
how
these
contextual
factors
affect
UA
C.
Prové
et
al.
/
Land
Use
Policy
56
(2016)
16–26
19
Table
2
Categories
of
stakeholders
and
their
presence
in
Warsaw
and
Ghent.
(A
qualitative
evaluation
of
the
degree
of
presence
of
different
stakeholder
groups
within
both
contexts,
with
,
not
represented;
+/,
weakly
represented;
+,
actively
represented;
++,
very
actively
represented
according
to
interviewees).
Stakeholders
Examples
Warsaw
Ghent
Municipal
government
Policy
makers,
public
officers,
council
members
++
Social
and
cultural
institutions
NGOs,
social
workers,
health
and
education
professionals
+/
+
Pioneers
Students,
volunteers
+
++
Entrepreneurial
Farmers,
architects,
restaurants,
distributors
+/
+
Academic
Research
centers,
universities
+/
+
advocacy
and
developments.
An
additional
motivation
for
select-
ing
these
two
cities
was
the
early
stage
of
UA
development
in
both
places.
This
enabled
us
to
identify
and
locate
key
stakeholders,
ini-
tiatives
and
events
at
the
foundation
of
an
UA
movement,
and
thus
generate
a
good
overview
of
the
UA
governance
process
in
both
cities.
To
explore,
describe
and
explain
UA
developments
in
Warsaw
and
Ghent,
we
mainly
used
semi-structured
interviews
and
partic-
ipant
observation
(Yin,
2003).
Both
cases
were
studied
using
the
same
empirical
methods,
namely
similar
criteria
for
stakeholder
selection,
comparable
topic
lists
and
similar
field
observation
methods.
Selection
of
interviewees
in
both
cities
began
with
partic-
ipant
observation
and
a
web
search
to
identify
key
UA
stakeholders,
followed
by
a
snowball
procedure.
We
questioned
each
interviewee
about
their
perspectives
on,
and
involvement
in,
UA
developments
in
their
cities;
their
perspectives
on
the
constitution
of
the
network
of
UA
stakeholders
in
their
cities;
their
understanding
of
contextual
factors
that
enable
and
constrain
UA
developments
in
their
cities;
and
their
views
on
the
future
of
UA
developments
in
their
city.
We
collected
our
data
during
three
periods:
two
in
Ghent
(spring
2013,
20
interviews
and
spring
2014,
12
interviews)
and
one
in
Warsaw
(spring
2014,
18
interviews).
All
interviews
were
recorded
and
fully
transcribed.
During
the
same
periods,
we
also
made
field
notes
during
informal
meetings
and
field
visits,
and
collected
rel-
evant
documents
(including
policy
documents,
newspaper
articles
and
website
texts)
to
complement
our
interview
data
and
to
enable
data
triangulation
(Yin,
1993).
In
Ghent,
we
also
collected
data
during
focus
group
meetings
for
a
project
launched
in
2014
by
the
department
of
urban
planning
called
“Vision
for
agriculture
in
Ghent,
2050”.
Conventional
farmers
and
their
representatives,
pioneers,
entrepreneurs,
academics,
representatives
of
social
and
cultural
institutions
and
public
officers
were
consulted
for
feed-
back
regarding
opportunities
and
bottlenecks
for
the
agriculture
and
food
system
in
Ghent.
The
goal
was
to
explore
the
potential
for
a
local
agriculture
and
food
system
supported
by
a
common
vision.
We
maintained
contact
with
key
stakeholders
from
both
cities
after
the
data
collection
periods
through
email
or
personal
contact,
in
order
to
stay
updated
on
important
events
and
devel-
opments
relating
to
UA.
In
both
cities,
our
data
analysis
focused
on
the
following:
determining
the
presence
of
UA
initiatives;
the
net-
work
of
stakeholders
involved
in
governing
UA
developments;
and
the
impact
of
the
urban
layout,
political
climate,
and
public
percep-
tions
and
attitudes
toward
use
of
urban
space
on
UA
advocacy
and
developments.
3.2.
Introduction
of
the
cases
To
introduce
the
cases,
we
outline
a
number
of
structural
differ-
ences
between
Warsaw
and
Ghent
(See
Table
1).
The
capital
city
of
Warsaw
comprises
18
districts.
It
is
the
main
Polish
center
for
pol-
itics,
business,
innovation,
trade
and
tourism
(Clark
and
Moonen,
2015;
Foreign
Affairs,
2014;
Metaxas
and
Tsavdaridou,
2013).
The
modern
appearance
of
the
city
is
largely
the
result
of
post-war
reconstruction.
After
introducing
the
market
economy
in
the
1990s
and
joining
the
EU
in
2004,
Poland’s
economy
has
been
booming.
Warsaw’s
economic
situation
has
long
been
advantageous
in
rela-
tion
to
the
rest
of
the
country
(Euromonitor
International,
2016;
Niemczyk,
1998).
Immigration
numbers
in
Warsaw
mainly
repre-
sent
Eastern
Europeans
and
rural-urban
migration.
Net
migration
in
Poland
as
a
whole
has
been
negative
for
many
years,
however.
Ghent
comprises
nine
townships
and
has
a
reputation
for
being
one
of
the
most
progressive
and
vibrant
cities
in
Flanders,
i.e.
the
largely
urbanized
northern
part
of
Belgium.
Ghent
is
home
to
a
relatively
large
population
of
young,
leftist
and
highly
educated
people
(Certomà
and
Notteboom,
2015).
The
population
is
becom-
ing
increasingly
diverse,
with
significant
numbers
of
residents
with
roots
in
Bulgaria,
Turkey,
the
Netherlands,
Slovakia,
Poland
and
Morocco
(Environmental
Department
Ghent,
2012).
In
both
Warsaw
and
Ghent,
the
general
food
purchasing
and
consumption
patterns
follow
global
trends:
the
supermarket
is
the
main
food
supplier
and
the
consumption
of
fast
food
and
snacks
is
increasing.
In
2012,
the
number
of
people
at
risk
of
poverty
in
Poland
(before
changes
in
social
support)
was
lower
than
in
Belgium
(Eurostat,
2012).
These
numbers
reflect
Warsaw’s
recent
economic
boom
(Foreign
Affairs,
2014)
as
well
as
the
economic
banking
crisis
in
2008,
which
led
to
increased
risk
of
poverty
in
Ghent
residents
(Environmental
Department
Ghent,
2012).
In
Ghent,
people
eligi-
ble
for
social
assistance
increased
from
19/1000
in
2008
to
24/1000
in
2010.
4.
Results
In
the
following
section,
we
describe
the
UA
initiatives
in
both
cities
and
discuss
the
configuration
of
stakeholder
networks
that
advocate
UA
in
Warsaw
and
Ghent.
Subsequently,
we
analyze
how
the
contextual
characteristics
of
“urban
layout”,
“political
climate”,
and
“public
perceptions
and
attitudes
toward
use
of
urban
space”
affect
the
configurations
of
stakeholder
networks
and
the
develop-
ment
of
UA
initiatives
in
both
cities.
4.1.
UA
initiatives
in
Warsaw
and
Ghent
Under
the
umbrella
of
UA,
many
diverse
initiatives
have
recently
been
developed
in
both
cities,
marking
an
upcoming
trend
toward
urban
food
production.
In
both
cases,
UA
projects
are
primarily
initiated
by
non-governmental
agents
and
involve
practices
such
as
guerilla
gardening,
rooftop
gardening,
community
gardening,
CSA,
apiculture,
vertical
farming,
educational
farming,
institu-
tional/social
gardens,
artistic
and
experimental
projects.
Moreover,
in
both
contexts,
existing
UA
initiatives
get
extensive
coverage
in
newspapers,
magazines,
blogs,
websites,
posters
and
other
visual
displays,
which
gives
the
impression
of
a
growing
UA
movement.
However,
interviewees
complained
about
the
many
difficulties
in
realizing
novel
UA
initiatives.
Partly
because
of
these
difficulties,
the
majority
of
UA
projects
are
traditional
vegetable
garden-
ing
projects.
Innovations
commonly
associated
with
UA,
such
as
aquaponics,4hydroponics,
LED-farming
initiatives,
or
agroparks
4Defined
here
as
a
symbiotic
system
combining
fish
production
and
cultivation
of
plants
in
water.
Apart
from
fish
fodder,
it
is
a
closed-loop
system.
20
C.
Prové
et
al.
/
Land
Use
Policy
56
(2016)
16–26
Table
3
Key
contextual
characteristics
based
on
in-depth
interviews
with
stakeholders
in
Warsaw
and
Ghent.
Warsaw
Ghent
Urban
layout
Political
climate
Public
perceptions
&
attitudes
toward
use
of
urban
space.
Urban
layout
Political
climate
Public
perceptions
&
attitudes
toward
use
of
urban
space.
Warsaw
is
characterized
by
broad
streets,
green
and/or
open
space
and
compact
high-rise
housing
Focus
on
economic
and
infrastructural
development
“Agriculture”
and
“rurality”
are
associated
with
the
past,
unfavorable
conditions
and
economic
hardship
Lack
of
green
and
open
space,
densely
populated
city;
strongly
urbanized;
well-developed
suburban
housing
with
private
gardens
Socio-ecological
problems
are
high
on
the
policy
agenda
Broad
public
support
for
urban
food
production
initiatives
High
number
of
allotment
gardens
Poor
understanding
of
UA
Community
gardens
as
appropriate
location
for
urban
food
production
Resurgence
of
allotment
gardens,
but
few
gardens
Substantial
attention
given
to
UA
and
UA-related
initiatives
Shared
perception
of
lack
of
space
as
a
major
barrier
to
UA
development
Strict
division
of
land-use
functions;
poor
use
of
public
land
Poor
support
in
administration,
planning
and
policies
for
UA,
and
agriculture
in
general
Safety
concerns
relating
to
urban
food
production
Less
strict
division
of
land-use
functions;
multifunctional
land
use
and
public
land
use
are
common
UA
understood
as
a
strategy
in
the
plan
for
a
climate
neutral
city
by
2050
Low
to
moderate
safety
concerns
Urban
and
peri-urban
land
increasingly
transformed
for
economic
development
UA
referred
to
as
an
activity
for
professional
farmers
or
citizens
in
community
gardens;
focus
on
inclusion
is
lacking
“Local”
is
generally
understood
as
“Polish”
Agricultural
land
increasingly
transformed
into
land
used
for
keeping
horses,
urbanization
and
nature
preservation.
Lack
of
explicit
focus
on
the
process
to
include
historically
under-represented
social
and
ethnic
groups
in
the
public
sphere
Local
is
understood
as
“food
produced
in
or
around
the
Ghent
region”.
Clear
identification
of
rural
areas
surrounding
Warsaw,
namely
in
close
proximity
to
the
city.
Weak
associational
life
Urban-rural
distinctions
are
difficult
to
sustain
in
the
immediate
areas
around
Ghent
Strong
associational
life
The
topics
of
food
and
agriculture
are
increasingly
popular,
but
with
a
select
audience
Increasing
attention
on
topics
of
food
and
agriculture
Mainly
young,
white,
educated,
middle-class
citizens
enthusiastic
about
UA
Mainly
white,
educated,
middle-class
citizens
enthusiastic
about
UA
are
either
scarce
or
non-existent
in
both
cities.
It
should
also
be
noted
that
the
number
of
novel
UA
initiatives
in
Ghent
is
relatively
higher
than
in
Warsaw.5
In
Warsaw,
in
addition
to
the
wealth
of
community
gardens
(See
Table
1)
which,
in
the
case
of
Poland,
can
be
best
described
as
individual
plots
of
green
open
space
on
public
land
assigned
to
citizens
or
groups
we
predominantly
find
artistic
and
experi-
mental
projects,
examples
of
which
are
rather
scarce
and
whose
goals
are
often
not
made
explicit.
Examples
are
seasonal
projects
in
a
museum
or
other
cultural
institutions
and
dropping
of
seed
bombs
in
neighborhoods.
Apart
from
these,
few
UA
initiatives
were
observed.
In
Ghent,
community
gardens
are
the
most
common
form
of
UA.
Due
to
space
constraints,
gardening
projects
in
Ghent
are
often
initiated
or
incorporated
by
larger
non-profit
socio-economic
institutions
that
have
relatively
large
amounts
of
land
or
space
available.
Accordingly,
Ghent
UA
initiatives
adopt
similar
socio-
economic
objectives.
Examples
are
incorporating
food
production
activities
within
social
employment
or
job
skills
training
programs
and
horticultural
training
in
educational
institutions.
In
2013,
for-
profit
UA
initiatives
emerged
for
the
first
time
in
Ghent.
UA
is
an
emerging
topic
in
both
Warsaw
and
Ghent.
A
range
of
different
stakeholders
are
involved
in
the
UA
initiatives
men-
tioned
above.
For
reasons
of
analytical
clarity,
we
have
grouped
5Can
be
defined
as
spatial
clusters
of
value
chains
in
an
industrial
setup
in
prox-
imity
to
urban
areas.
these
different
stakeholders
into
five
categories
(See
Table
2).
Based
on
an
appraisal
of
interviewees
concerning
the
presence
of
differ-
ent
UA
stakeholders
in
their
cities,
we
have
given
the
involvement
of
the
different
stakeholder
groups
in
UA
advocacy
a
relative
score
from
to
++,
to
give
an
indication
of
the
strength
of
the
presence
and
visibility
of
UA
stakeholders
in
relation
to
the
other
context
(Table
3).
What
immediately
emerges
from
Table
2
is
that
similar
cate-
gories
of
stakeholders
advocate
for
UA
in
both
cities.
Strikingly,
however,
(1)
municipal
government
stakeholders
are
absent
in
the
case
of
Warsaw,
and
(2)
the
other
categories
(social
and
cultural
institutions,
pioneers,
entrepreneurs
and
academics)
are
more
strongly
represented
in
Ghent
than
in
Warsaw.
Evans
(1996)
suggests
that
connections
between
state
and
society
can
forge
syn-
ergistic
relationships
that
in
turn
foster
action—in
this
case,
UA
initiatives.
The
paragraphs
below
show
how
the
presence
of
munic-
ipal
government
stakeholders
and
the
strong
focus
on
networking
can
create
a
strong
platform
for
UA
in
Ghent.
Indeed,