Last week I gave my first ever guest lecture for a UniSA course called “Environment: A Human Perspective”. There were about 50-60 first year students present and my nerves came on strong at the beginning. But I made it through, and listening back I think I managed to get my passion and enthusiasm for urban agriculture across to the students – I even made them laugh couple of times!… intentionally, of course.
Part #1 of the lecture covered the basics of urban agriculture (UA), some of its differences around the world and how common it is in South Australia.
In Part #2 (which is still being edited) I describe how there is more to UA than simply the productive side (how much food people can grow) – there is also a strong social value side. In the middle there’s some interaction where I ask the students what it takes to grow food from start to finish, and how this in turn influences your research design.
I mention both my honours research on the social reaction of people to aquaponics, in addition to how some of the local councils react to the idea of aquaponics. And finished up with a little on my PhD research on the productive capacity and social value of UA via the Edible Gardens Project.
I know there are a couple a little rough moments in here. But I would still love to get any feedback you may have.
Georgia the Urban Ag. Scientist
2 thoughts on “A Guest Lecture on Urban Agriculture”
What I like about Part 1 is the examples that you use regarding the diversity of UA. It’s not just some trend started by Millennials to revitalize old urban centers (hence ‘urban’) with planting vegetables (hence the common perception of ‘agriculture’), it could be a way of life for others as well as some sort of community outreach project. I’ve found that dealing with potential vocabulary issues first when speaking to the public really helps them ease into the presentation, and having wide variety in examples (or having a really good, broad one) means that the topic can resonate with at least *someone* in the crowd.
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Thanks Jonny, I did want to emphasise that UA can mean lots of different things for different people. It also really makes me wonder, if there are thousands of people really depending on UA for additional food or to help make some extra money – is there any way UA can work as this kind of security blanket for people in the western world? Or should we accept that it’s okay for us to derive completely different values from our UA? It’s a thinker!