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Sustainability 2018, 10(8), 2924; https://doi.org/10.3390/su10082924

Every City a Food Growing City? What Food Growing Schools London Reveals about City Strategies for Food System Sustainability

1
Sustainable Places Institute, Cardiff University, Cardiff CF10 3BA, Wales, UK
2
Bristol Centre for Public Health and Wellbeing, University of the West of England, Bristol BS16 1QY, UK
3
Science Communication Unit, University of the West of England, Bristol BS16 1QY, UK
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 10 July 2018 / Revised: 10 August 2018 / Accepted: 14 August 2018 / Published: 17 August 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Local Food Initiatives in the World’s Cities)
Full-Text   |   PDF [228 KB, uploaded 17 August 2018]

Abstract

Cities have emerged as leaders in food system innovation and transformation, but their potential can be limited by the absence of supportive governance arrangements. This study examined the value of Food Growing Schools London (FGSL) as a programme seeking city-wide change through focusing on one dimension of the food system. Mixed methods case study research sought to identify high-level success factors and challenges. Findings demonstrate FGSL’s success in promoting food growing by connecting and amplifying formerly isolated activities. Schools valued the programme’s expertise and networking opportunities, whilst strategic engagement facilitated new partnerships linking food growing to other policy priorities. Challenges included food growing’s marginality amongst priorities that direct school and borough activity. Progress depended on support from individual local actors so varied across the city. London-wide progress was limited by the absence of policy levers at the city level. Experience from FGSL highlights how city food strategies remain constrained by national policy contexts, but suggests they may gain traction through focusing on well-delineated, straightforward activities that hold public appeal. Sustainability outcomes might then be extended through a staged approach using this as a platform from which to address other food issues. View Full-Text
Keywords: urban food; city strategies; sustainability transitions; school food; London urban food; city strategies; sustainability transitions; school food; London
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited (CC BY 4.0).
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Pitt, H.; Jones, M.; Weitkamp, E. Every City a Food Growing City? What Food Growing Schools London Reveals about City Strategies for Food System Sustainability. Sustainability 2018, 10, 2924.

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