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Special Issue "Mapping Agroecology in Europe. New Developments and Applications"

A special issue of Sustainability (ISSN 2071-1050). This special issue belongs to the section "Sustainable Agriculture, Food and Wildlife".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 28 February 2018

Special Issue Editors

Guest Editor
Prof. Dr. Alexander Wezel

Professor for Agroecology and Landscape Ecology, Directeor of the Department Agroecology and Environment, ISARA-Lyon, 23, rue Jean Baldassini, 69364 Lyon, France
Website | E-Mail
Phone: +0033-427-85-85-84
Interests: agroecology; biodiversity managment in agroecosystems; result-oriented agri-environment measures; management of drinking water catchments; fish ponds
Guest Editor
Mr. Stéphane Bellon

INRA SAD, Avignon, France
Website | E-Mail
Phone: +0432722583
Interests: dynamics and knowledge in agroecology; organic and ecologically based agricultures; functional biodiversity; systems design and management; research policies

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Agroecology has gradually developed in the last two decades, but has only recently been more strongly promoted by different movements, organization, institutions, different farmer groups, and also research. Whereas the development of agroecology was very strong from the beginning in Latin America, not enough is known, thus far, for the case of Europe. There are different evolutions in agroecology as a science, movement and practice, but no substantial documentation exists for this for different regions and countries in Europe. Additionally, in relation to policies, only one country, France, has, so far, a policy for developing agroecology in practice, science, and education. Other countries might have elements in their national policies, but not yet clearly defined. The same applies for the Common Agricultural Policy of the EU. Thus, there is a lack of knowledge regarding these agroecology related policies.

We invite to contribute to this Special Issue that provide new insights, developments, applications, and policies related to agroecology in different countries and regions in Europe to get an enlarged and improved view about the development of sustainable agriculture and agroecology in Europe. This includes also the food systems approach in agroecology, as well as historical evolutions in different countries.

Prof. Dr. Alexander Wezel
Mr. Stéphane Bellon
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Sustainability is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1400 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.


  • agroecological practices
  • agroecology
  • collective action
  • farmers’ movements
  • historical developments of agroecology
  • management of agroecosystems
  • agricultural and environmental policy
  • sustainable agriculture

Published Papers (1 paper)

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Open AccessReview Supporting Agricultural Ecosystem Services through the Integration of Perennial Polycultures into Crop Rotations
Sustainability 2017, 9(12), 2267; doi:10.3390/su9122267
Received: 1 November 2017 / Revised: 30 November 2017 / Accepted: 5 December 2017 / Published: 7 December 2017
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This review analyzes the potential role and long-term effects of field perennial polycultures (mixtures) in agricultural systems, with the aim of reducing the trade-offs between provisioning and regulating ecosystem services. First, crop rotations are identified as a suitable tool for the assessment of
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This review analyzes the potential role and long-term effects of field perennial polycultures (mixtures) in agricultural systems, with the aim of reducing the trade-offs between provisioning and regulating ecosystem services. First, crop rotations are identified as a suitable tool for the assessment of the long-term effects of perennial polycultures on ecosystem services, which are not visible at the single-crop level. Second, the ability of perennial polycultures to support ecosystem services when used in crop rotations is quantified through eight agricultural ecosystem services. Legume–grass mixtures and wildflower mixtures are used as examples of perennial polycultures, and compared with silage maize as a typical crop for biomass production. Perennial polycultures enhance soil fertility, soil protection, climate regulation, pollination, pest and weed control, and landscape aesthetics compared with maize. They also score lower for biomass production compared with maize, which confirms the trade-off between provisioning and regulating ecosystem services. However, the additional positive factors provided by perennial polycultures, such as reduced costs for mineral fertilizer, pesticides, and soil tillage, and a significant preceding crop effect that increases the yields of subsequent crops, should be taken into account. However, a full assessment of agricultural ecosystem services requires a more holistic analysis that is beyond the capabilities of current frameworks. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mapping Agroecology in Europe. New Developments and Applications)

Planned Papers

The below list represents only planned manuscripts. Some of these manuscripts have not been received by the Editorial Office yet. Papers submitted to MDPI journals are subject to peer-review.

Title: The coexistence of multiple worldviews in livestock farming drives agroecological transition. A case study in French PDO cheese mountain areas.

Authors: Cayre P., Michaud A., Theau J.P., Rigolot C.

Abstract: The ecological crisis requires farmers to enter in an agroecological transition. The concept of worldview is interesting to understand this transition, but remains mostly theoretical. The aim of this paper is to investigate how worldviews relate to livestock farmer’s practices. We interviewed comprehensively thirty-six dairy farmers in three PDO cheese areas in the French mountains. We identify four worldviews characterized by: i) ontological, moral and politic backgrounds, ii) agencies with nature entities; iii) farming systems functioning. Different worldviews coexist in each area, and also at farm scale. Implications are discussed for advisers and researchers engaged in the agroecological transition.

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