Interactions between Niche and Regime: An Analysis of Learning and Innovation Networks for Sustainable Agriculture across Europe

Ingram, Julie ORCID: 0000-0003-0712-4789, Maye, Damian ORCID: 0000-0002-4459-6630, Kirwan, James ORCID: 0000-0002-4626-9940, Curry, Nigel R and Kubinakova, Katarina ORCID: 0000-0001-9246-7473 (2015) Interactions between Niche and Regime: An Analysis of Learning and Innovation Networks for Sustainable Agriculture across Europe. Journal of Agricultural Education and Extension, 21 (1). pp. 55-71. doi:10.1080/1389224X.2014.991114

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Purpose This paper aims to reveal, and contribute to an understanding of, the processes that connect learning and innovation networks in sustainable agriculture to elements of the mainstream agricultural regime. Drawing on the innovations and transition literature, the paper frames the analysis around niche-regime interaction using the notion of niche-regime compatibility. Design/Methodology/approach 17 Learning and Innovation Networks for Sustainable Agriculture (LINSA) (engaged in agricultural food production, non-food and rural development) were analysed. In line with the project’s transdisciplinary approach data were collected in a series of participatory workshops. Findings Five modes of LINSA-regime interaction are distinguished based on compatibility. The level of LINSA-regime compatibility influences the extent of the diffusion of LINSA ideas and practices into the regime. However, interaction processes within these modes reveal multiple and diverse connections between LINSA and regime entities suggesting a more complex relationship exists. Practical Implications A range of connecting processes and activities (for example, certification, exemption from regulation, facilitation of networking) can bring about effective LINSA-regime interaction and could be externally supported. Originality/Value Empirical evidence from 17 case studies provides valuable insights from a number of different contexts across Europe. By directing analysis of interaction at the level of LINSA (niche project), rather than at the macro level, the study offers an original perspective. It suggests that the transition to sustainable agriculture might be understood as a complex of interactive processes leading to a series of adaptive changes, rather than as regime change.

Item Type: Article
Article Type: Article
Additional Information: This is an Accepted Manuscript of an article published by Taylor & Francis in Journal of Agricultural Education and Extension on 8 January 2015 available online:
Uncontrolled Keywords: Innovation; Transition, Niche; Regime, learning; Network; Sustainable agriculture; REF2021
Related URLs:
Subjects: G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > GE Environmental Sciences
S Agriculture > S Agriculture (General)
Divisions: Schools and Research Institutes > Countryside and Community Research Institute
Research Priority Areas: Place, Environment and Community
Depositing User: Anne Pengelly
Date Deposited: 26 May 2015 14:28
Last Modified: 03 Feb 2022 18:46

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