Last update: 3 July 2018
Agroforestry and world challenges
1 - Mitigating climate change with agroforestry
Agroforestry systems are known to sequester large amounts of carbon in the tree biomass. Several publications have also shown a positive impact of agroforestry systems on soil organic carbon (SOC) stocks, especially after a conversion from croplands. These systems are also promoted to adapt agriculture to climate change and to diversify food production systems, and are therefore good candidates to reach the objectives of the 4 per Thousand Initiative.This session welcomes studies exploring changes in SOC stocks and accumulation rates in agroforestry systems compared to other land uses. A special attention will be given to studies looking at deep SOC stocks, and mapping the spatial heterogeneity of SOC within agroforestry systems.This session also encourages studies assessing the drivers and processes of SOC storage and dynamics in agroforestry systems. This includes a full quantification of C inputs to the soil (especially root inputs), dissolved organic carbon, C stabilization mechanisms (aggregate stability, priming effect…), but also long-term assessment of SOC storage through modeling.
2 - Agroforestry and adaptation to climate change
Shade trees are often used to protect crops from excess heat and light in the tropics, where agroforestry (AF) is clearly seen as a way to adapt to climate change (CC). It could be interesting to grow crops under shade trees in temperate climates also, to adapt agriculture to CC by buffering temperature both at the annual scale and at the daily scale, thus reducing yield loss due to extreme temperatures (frost, heat wave), by reducing soil evaporation through a reduction in radiation, wind speed, temperature and increase in air humidity and by reducing flood risk. However, the competition for water between trees and crops might be exacerbated in the context of CC due to reduced rainfall and increased risk of drought. Tree productivity in AF conditions could thus be reduced, although the deeper rooting pattern in AF compared to forest conditions, might give the trees access to more water resources. This session welcomes modelling and experimental studies relevant to the assessment of the resilience of AF systems to CC as well as to the design of AF systems more adapted to CC and their adoption by stakeholders.
3 - Agroforestry for combating land degradation and desertification in dry areas
This session will focus on the role that agroforestry plays in enhancing soil restoration for combating land degradation and desertification in the dry regions of the world. Arid and semi-arid zones are characterized by low and erratic rainfall that does not exceed 700mm per year, and periodic droughts. Human-induced factors, especially overgrazing and other forms of inappropriate land use such as overexploitation of vegetation, excessive tillage and crop-residue removal, may result in significant degradation of land. Degraded land can be defined as land that has lost some degree of its natural productivity due to human-caused processes. Land degradation usually involves soil degradation, which refers to negative changes in the physical, chemical, and biological properties of the soil, as well as vegetation degradation. Land degradation also embraces negative changes in the capacity of ecosystems to provide social and environmental goods and services. At the landscape level, such a degradation can lead to negative microclimatic changes, thus facilitating desertification. Land degradation and desertification can have serious consequences for the livelihoods of rural communities by decreasing water supply and reducing food security, while increasing their vulnerability to biological and environmental hazards and to the effects of climate change. Many agroforestry technologies may help to restore land productivity. For example, trees can stabilize the soil, especially when they are used in terracing and contour cultivation to combat soil erosion. They can also protect soils against wind erosion. Their branches can be pruned and applied as mulch to increase soil organic matter and nutrient status. Presentations of scientific findings on the performance of different agroforestry technologies in providing soil restoration and combating land degradation and desertification in dry regions, including social aspects and scaling-up, are welcomed.
4 - Agroforestry and biodiversity conservation
Agroforestry has been demonstrated to be a feasible alternative to less biologically diverse agriculture in balancing biodiversity conservation and production. However, different studies have also demonstrated that the biodiversity conservation value of agroforestry systems fluctuates depending on management decisions. Multiple management decisions might affect the vegetative composition as well as the resource availability for animal species, thereby affecting their overall conservation value. Management decisions are crucial to fostering the desired balance between conservation and productivity, and more information is needed to accurately identify the trade-offs between them. Identification and measurement of these tradeoffs is crucial in the development of biodiversity friendly management practices since these are the best options for preserving ecosystem functions and the services needed to secure sustainable production. This session aims to cover research related to the value of agroforestry systems for biodiversity conservation and the different effects that management might have on the value of particular agroforestry systems.
5 - Agroforestry for water quality and watershed restoration
Agroforestry practices offer the potential to improve environmental, economic, ecological and social benefits for landowners globally. These practices have enhanced tree-cover on agricultural lands, close to 1 billion ha, world-wide. Integration of perennial trees in any given agricultural watershed could / might result in e.g., biodiversity enhancement (plants, animals, birds and microorganisms), increased economic returns influenced by enhanced biodiversity, increased soil health and fertility, positive influence on stream geomorphology, increased energy capture at different trophic levels at the landscape / watershed level, improved water quality, soil erosion control, reduction of non-point source pollutants entering water sources, watershed-level carbon (C) sequestration, and the reduction of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions (CO2, CH4 and N2O) from the terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems. However, especially in areas close to streams and rivers, where modern intensive agricultural operations are ongoing, riparian filter strips with woody plants are lacking. These sites therefore might highly benefit from the establishment of riparian buffer strips or filter strips. Riparian buffer strips / filter strips are perennial vegetation (trees, shrubs, perennial grasses) along the banks of waterways found in both forested and agricultural areas, or as constant vegetation barriers integrated in sensitive areas of the crop field itself. They can be artificially established or can also occur naturally. Although they represent only a minor component of the landscape, they are highly productive systems that exert a disproportionate regulatory influence over many important ecological processes at many scales.
6- Agroforestry and the migration challenge
Migrations have always participated to human history and can tell the stories behind present land occupation and agricultural practices. When traveling, migrants bring with them knowledges, traditions, practices, and sometimes seeds and animals. Where they settle, they influence the evolution of farming, and bring about land use changes. They also melt into local populations, adopt some practices and adapt them depending on their own background. Agroforestry practices can be transferred, shared, learnt, from one place to another, with migration flows. How do they answer to specific needs and constraints of migrants? Agroforestry might be found in forest agricultural frontiers, as practices involved in forest conversion. Their ability to provide a diversity of products, both for self-sufficiency and for rent is an important advantage in remote areas. They are also frequent in land occupation strategies in savannahs, either in answer to dryness constraint or selected for their labor extensiveness that allow to occupy quickly a larger surface of land. Can agroforestry practices also participate in stabilizing populations and limiting migration flows? Several reasons hide behind migration: poverty, insecurity, extreme or repetitive climate events that jeopardize yields. Agroforestry practices can help in increasing the resilience of production systems to climate events, they also participate in climate change mitigation. They might participate in food security and in alleviation of poverty, especially in remote areas. Agroforestry practices might also be used to restore degraded landscapes. Finally, planting trees might be a way to mark land and secure recognition of ownership. In this session we are interested in case studies that illustrate how agroforestry practices participate in fixing populations and limiting migration flows, or how agroforestry practices answer to specific needs and constraints of migrant populations.
7 - Can agroforestry induce jobs and green growth
Green growth means fostering economic growth and development, while ensuring that natural assets continue to provide the resources and environmental services on which our well-being relies. Agroforestry is a sustainable land use practice and system that can be implemented worldwide in any type of land cover. Agroforestry is able to fulfill any of the three pillars of sustainability: economic, environment and social by fostering green growth and creating jobs. Green growth is produced thanks to the diversification of production of the agricultural and forest systems that should choose the best agroforestry components (woody and agricultural production from the lower storey) to increase profitability of the farm but also because agroforestry is the best tool to ecointensificate as it is able to optimize the use of the resources including light and nutrients. This session aims at developing best combinations of woody perennials and agricultural production from the lower storey to promote economic growth and development and therefore the creation of the new jobs world wide.
8 - Scaling up of scientifically proven agroforestry innovations
Contributions expected in this session refer to effective scaling ups of agroforestry research outputs and experiences. The session also considers research embedded in development across varying contexts and scales including technologies, socio-economies, service deliveries, policies and institutional environments. This may accelerate impacts of agroforestry innovations and systems to provide better, equitable and sustainable agroforestry benefits to the greatest number of people over the widest area. This does not only improve agronomic, economic, environmental performances of the current practices; and optimize trade-offs among them, but it also contributes to changes in institutions, policies, rules laws, cultural values, and beliefs which may support scaling ups of agroforestry innovations with concrete and sustainable impacts. The session also considers participatory, holistic and multi-disciplinary approaches, action researches, innovation platforms, and models by ensuring participatory, and inclusive engagements of extended peers of communities (including scientists, producers and other stakeholders) who play key roles in accelerated scaling ups of and sustainable impacts from agroforestry intensification.
9 - Agroforestry and certification
“Second- and third-party certification systems”, “Participatory Guarantee System” (PGS), “Internal Control Systems” (ICS): all these voluntary market tools aim to provide a credible guarantee for markets seeking sustainable or legal products. In the case of agroforestry systems, especially with smallholder farmers involved, this guarantee shall be a tool to increase smallholder access to markets. However, often it is seen as a barrier and only appropriate to large scale industrial production. There is a range of certification and verification processes to demonstrate organic or good agriculture practices for food and sustainability for forest-based products. The question is: How to make feasible certification processes for agroforestry based production systems?Researchers or professionals should transfer their agroforestry knowledge and experiences with certification in the forestry or food sector. They should draw on recent certification developments and provide examples of the impacts on livelihoods, incentivising innovation and support of the development of profitable and sustainable agroforestry or “Trees outside Forests”. Empowerment, active participation of stakeholders, knowledge sharing and relationship building will be the key themes of this session.
10 - Agroforestry in practice
Agroforestry practices take advantage of the interactive benefits (both environmental and productive) from integrating trees, shrubs with crops and/or livestock. It offers ways to take advantage of new and profitable product markets while applying specialized knowledge and skills to the development of stable, resilient and sustainable production systems. Under this session, emphasis is placed on long-term agroforestry land use practices and woodlot management satisfying the three criteria: Intensive, Interactive and Integrated. The agroforestry practice session aims to realise a wide variety of case studies of best management practices (BMPs) while generating significant co-benefits, including production diversification, landscape intensification, soil and water stewardship, ecosystem restoration together with achieving economic profitability.
11 - Agroforestry in public policies
The Sustainable Development Goals, agreed in 2015, encourage all countries to address 17 social, environmental and economic goals that promote prosperity while protecting the planet. Whilst there is clear evidence that agroforestry can support the attainment of these goals (see the other sessions!), farmers continue to cite administrative and policy burdens as one of the most important reasons for not using agroforestry. In this session, we are seeking papers from tropicaland temperate contexts that move beyond stating that there is a mis-match between our aspirations for agroforestry and its administration and implementation in practice. Instead we want to encourage papers that demonstrate and explain how public policies, initiatives, strategies and action plans can successfully promote agroforestry at regional, national, and international levels. We encourage researchers, practicioners and policy makers to submit and to participate to an exciting roundtable about the key policy ingredients to make agroforestry attractive for farmers. Hopefully by learning about agroforestry policies that work, we can frame the key steps towards an agroforestry transition.
12- Gender dynamics in agroforestry systems
The relevance of gender issues in agroforestry has been broadly demonstrated. Yet there remain a number of issues that require additional focused attention. Of particular interest are the gendered implications of adaptation to climate change, intra-household decision-making and power dynamics, the functioning of norms (‘doing gender’) as they relate to agroforestry. This session invites abstracts that highlight issues of relevance such as: day-to-day masculinities as they function in agroforestry systems; intersectionality as it incorporates gender in such systems; and how, in the context of agroforestry, gender equality—SDG 5 and other SDGs, such as food security, poverty alleviation, and sustainable management of natural resources on land, can move hand in hand or otherwise. This panel is envisioned to incorporate these issues in various combinations that suggest serious implications for agroforestry management. We also welcome studies of indigenous agroforestry systems, such as swiddening, as well as systems that conform to conventional, formal science-based systems. We particularly hope to include interdisciplinary or transdisciplinary approaches and ones that incorporate a holistic perspective about local systems. Attention to the interactions among scales will also be welcome. We hope to produce a special journal issue from the papers we attract.
13 - Economics of agroforestry: the link between nature and society
Agroforestry practices and techniques are relatively well described as well as environmental aspects (biodiversity, impact on soils and fauna…). Impacts on farmer incomes and long-term economic benefits and strategies are still partially lacking in explaining why some farmers move to agroforestry. Social issues are mainly seen from an ethno-botanic perspective. This session focuses on socio-economic aspects, including income analysis (in particular for vulnerable countries and populations link to food security), social components (farmers’ perceptions, organization and policy), payments for ecosystem services and other environmental issues. The objectives of this session are 1) to contribute to knowledge on economic impacts and social nature of agroforestry practices in order to bridge the science-policy gap, 2) to provide a broader view of understanding the basics of agroforestry practices and development using a multi-disciplinary context, and 3) to highlight experiences linking science, local communities and policy. Beyond agroforestry techniques and its positive environmental impact, securing income generation, improving resilience and a social vision of this paradigm explain as well why long term practices is critical. Beyond the local knowledge involved in agroforestry spaces, we will explore the visions and complexities that the different agroforestry situations offer. Papers on both local experiences and larger contexts and analyses are welcome.
14 - Agroforestry value chains
A value chain is defined as the full range of activities which are required to bring a product or service from conception, through the different phases of production, transformation and delivery to final consumers, and eventual disposal after use. Value chain analysis seeks to characterize how chain activities are performed and to understand how value is created and shared among chain participants. Agroforestry systems are recognized to promote product diversification at farm level and to allow different sources of income for the farmers. The session “Agroforestry and value chains” aims at understanding how the adoption of agroforestry practices can improve the value of farm products obtained in a sustainable way. In particular, the sessions should consider scientific contributes focused on:
- methodologies and approaches adopted to perform value chain analysis and tools used to involve the stakeholders in the value chain
- link among the different actors of the chains: how different stakeholders participate at the chain creation and development and their relative interactions
- bottlenecks and opportunities of the value chain: identification of innovations that should be introduced to increase the chain value
- measuring, understanding and improving performance of value chain in terms of sustainability.
15 - Socio-economic and cultural constraints on technology adoption in agroforestry systems
Technology adoption has often been a key constraint on improving productivity, income and yields in farming, particularly in developing countries where market-based systems of production are not well developed, the subsistence economy remains strong, land is held under communal tenure and family labour is the backbone of production. This session welcomes papers that explore socio-cultural and economic factors that constrain or limit the adoption of new technologies in agroforestry systems. We interpret technology in its broad sense to include non-material technologies such as new farm management techniques, labour arrangements, changing gender relations, new regimes of land tenure, etc., as well as material technologies like new processing machinery, inorganic fertiliser and so on. We anticipate that together the presentations will provide an overview of the key constraints on technology adoption and smallholder productivity in much of the developing world and point to potential solutions and strategies to address such constraints.
16 - Agroforestry landscape
Across much of the world, agricultural systems, ecosystem health, and rural resource-based livelihoods are in crisis. Over the next 50 years, agriculture will be forced to go through an extraordinary transition to meet production needs sustainably, in the context of climate change, growing populations, and economic transformation. Biodiversity and ecosystem conservation efforts will need to shape new strategies in the face of agricultural growth. Populations and businesses will need to find new ways to manage their natural resource base to secure the full range of goods and services needed from their landscapes, to find the synergies and reduce the tradeoffs. Integrated management of agricultural landscapes (ILM) will be an essential building block towards that transition. Landscape-level platforms and partnerships are the mechanisms by which inclusive green growth and Sustainable Development Goals will be implemented. Agroforestry systems and practices promise to play a major role in the sustainable transformation of agriculture within sustainable landscapes. This Session on Agroforestry Landscapes will examine:
- The roles of agroforestry in multi-stakeholder strategies for integrated landscape management in diverse agroecosystems,
- The evidence on multi-objective performance of agroforestry at landscape scale
- Strategies for scaling agroforestry through multi-stakeholder landscape partnerships
- Tools for analyzing agroforestry adoption and impacts at landscape scale
- Drivers, processes, and social-ecological impacts of expansion or decline of agroforestry systems at landscape scales.
17 - Urban and peri-urban agroforestry for food and nutritional security
The world has been experiencing unprecedented levels of urbanization in the past few decades, a trend that is expected to continue so that food and nutritional security is emerging as one of the principal concerns in many cities. Another major concern is ‘regreening’, as, much too often, the conversion of agricultural and forest land to urban land has been done with little or no concern for environmental quality, leading to loss of tree cover and ecosystems services. Developing agroforestry in the urban and peri-urban remaining green spaces, as long as they are not impacted by pollution, may respond to these concerns: combining the production of food and the rehabilitation of a tree and plant cover with its various ecosystem services, it would increase food and nutritional security for the urban poor and reconnect the urban people to nature.This session will explore whether and how agroforestry can contribute to both food security and environmental betterment of cities. Although open to any kind of scientific presentation, case studies are especially welcome. Case studies may include aspects related to agroecology, permaculture, agriculture and forestry, in an urban context; they may also cover a wide range of scales from local to global, and any kind of geographic setting. The papers presented for this session will be written-up with a view to publish them as a special issue of an international journal such as Agriculture, Ecosystems and the Environment, Agroforestry Systems or Forests, Trees and Livelihoods, or alternatively, as a stand-alone edited volume.
18 - Agroforestry mapping
Landscape level mapping of agroforestry systems and related interventions is an important approach for developmental planning at local, regional and national levels, given that the demand for up-to-date geo-spatial information for informed decision making are increasing exponentially. Mapping agencies must respond to these concerns, and must do so with increasing efficiency and effectiveness. Remote sensing, GPS and GIS techniques have been utilized successfully over the years for addressing these concerns. However, new and revolutionary trends are emerging in data capture and analysis. Invariably, Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV) are one of the newest and most innovative tools offering the advantages of utilizing superior reach and dexterity in data collection. This session will expose participants to results on the theories, science, applications, and technology of remote sensing and GIS studies in agroforestry systems. Our aim is to circulate novel/improved methods/approaches and / or algorithms of landscape level mapping relating to agroforestry systems and interventions to drive informed decision support systems. In this session, we will focus on the new trends in acquiring geospatial data through UAV and applications; Remote Sensing and its applications in agroforestry; Land evaluation in terms of agroforestry land suitability mapping; Modeling and Mapping Agroforestry parameters; and creation of a geospatial information systems to inform effective management of agroforestry systems etc. Special focus and attention will be placed on emerging and revolutionised trends in UAV applications and Lidar and Rader Remote Sensing applications in Agroforestry mapping and monitoring.
19 - Agroforestry and business / private sector / finance
Restoring degraded landscapes and enhancing the productivity of the agricultural and forestry landscapes we depend on to feed the planet's burgeoning population at the scale required is an effort that, beyond great science, demands the engagement of all sectors of society, and most particularly that of the private sector. This is comprised of hundreds of millions of enterprises, ranging from the smallholder farmers of the world's less developed countries to the giant corporations that control much of the globe’s commodity flows. How can the justifiable requirement to make a profit be harnessed to making landscapes more resilient, a process that frequently has a returns profile that is longer than the one a typical farmer operates under? How can the inherent complexity of more productive landscapes be married to industrial requirements for constant qualities and quantities of commodities? How can the high context specificity and heterogeneity that agroforestry science suggests is essential to highly productive and resilient landscapes be married with the requirements of synthetic planning and return inherent in large-scale capital allocations? What models can be developed to de-risk sustainability interventions from the most fragile actors in the value chain, smallholder farmers? Is it ultimately possible to transform business towards long-term sustainability or are these efforts destined to remain a minority pursuit, akin to greenwashing? This session will hear from practitioners, business people, farmers and representatives of trade bodies and associations to discuss this fascinating set of issues.
Specific agroforestry systems
20 - Challenges, opportunities and trade-offs of agroforestry with perennial crops (coffee, cocoa, rubber, vineyards, orchards…)
The benefits of adopting agroforestry practices have been widely promoted for perennial crops, particularly tropical ones with respect to sustainability, income diversification and climate change. However, they are not universal and dependent on local ecological conditions (i.e. climate, soil), companion tree species, and institutional and socio-economic context. Therefore, this session welcomes presentations (oral and poster) documenting challenges, opportunities and trade-offs of temperature and tropical agroforestry systems (AFS) with perennial crops, particularly dealing with the following issues :
- Ecological intensification in perennial AFS
- Reforestation and deforestation linked to expansion and intensification of tree crops
- Trade-offs between production and delivery of ecosystem services (soil fertility, biodiversity conservation, carbon sequestration, pests and diseases control, buffering of climate extremes)
- Climate-smart practices for adaptation of perennial AFS to climate change
- Eco-certification, value chains and perennial AFS
- Cost/benefit analysis and revenue diversification of perennial AFS
- Local agroforestry knowledge and co-innovation
- Timber production in tree crop based agroforestry systems: productivity, risk and vulnerability management, enabling frameworks (legal, political, financial, cultural)
21 - Cereals and annual crops in agroforestry
What are the benefits of growing crops with trees? It is often argued that agroforestry could reduce input requirements or buffering yield variability. Does this mean that sustainable mixed grain systems prevail for food security? Under what conditions is it true that sustainability is a path to sustainable agriculture? Are there limiting factors? If yes, how can we go beyond by using newly developed shade tolerant crops or bred and selected perennial cereal derivatives in companion with trees? Only some of the many questions worth to examine! The session aims to address:
the impacts of system design and crop variety on yield and quality (e.g. effect of trees - and distance from trees and hedges - on yield and quality. In absolute value but also in variability (for example, lower yields but more stable over time?)
the selection of species and varieties for shade tolerance and/or competition for water and nutrients.
the effect of the quantity and quality of light on crop growth and development
changes in practices (rotation, tillage, pesticides, fertilization) induced by the transition to agroforestry
the effect of the herbaceous strip under the trees on crop management and crop protection (e.g. are more herbicides required to face possible spill-over? are beneficial organisms efficient enough to do without pesticides?)
22 - Mediterranean agroforestry
The Mediterranean basin is the unique area where three different continents meet. It is characterized by a variety of ecosystems traditionally used by humans for the past millennia, providing numerous services and products and forming a variety of agroforestry systems. It is also the place that has and still further need to face the main challenges posed by the changing climate within a sustainable management. This session will focus on the following themes:
- Mediterranean systems: from tradition to modern agroforestry systems: This theme will investigate the lush history and wisdom of traditional agroforestry system and present the numerous possibilities of new systems. Articles on Food products will be included in this theme.
- Mediterranean agroforestry under a changing climate: This theme will investigate the current knowledge on threats and counteractions to confront a changing climate.
- Water for Mediterranean agroforestry: this them will look for articles that have investigated water cycle and economy under agroforestry systems.
23 - Challenges and opportunities for agroforestry on islands
Islands are home to endemic as well as threatened biodiversity, and harbor numerous natural and cultivated ecosystems. These ecosystems produce a wide range of goods such food, wood, fiber, medicines, woodfuel, as well as providing aesthetic, spiritual, educational and recreational values. These services support livelihood, economy, well-being and cultural identity of 600 million island dwelling people (one-tenth of the world population). Island ecosystems also regulate climate, provide a defense against natural disasters, support nutrient cycling, and soil and sand formation. Over the past century, island biodiversity has been subject to intense pressure from invasive alien species, habitat change and over-exploitation and, increasingly, from climate change and pollution. Land management on islands presents a number of specific key challenges. Due to the limited land base and the limited possibilities of expansion, the trade-off between agriculture intensification and environment protection is a key issue that can be addressed through agroforestry practices. For this session, we encourage you to submit works on island-based agroforestry systems covering the integration and management of high value crops, value chains and access to markets, prevention and regulation of pests and diseases, control of exotic species, conservation of local agrobiodiversity, governance, capacity building, and innovative strategies to cope with the cost of labor and agricultural inputs.
24 - Silvopastoral system: promoting rural development by increasing tree-animal-pasture relationships
Silvopastoral systems were and still are common all around the world. While traditional ones dominate large agricultural landscapes in less productive soils and/or climate, different new silvopastoral schemes emerged in the last decades to improve the forage autonomy of extensive pastures and to cope different environmental issues associated to livestock farming. The selection of the abstracts for this session will try to cover this geographical distribution and to demonstrate the relevance of these systems for livestock farmers and the provision of public ecosystem services. Both fundamental and applied research results are encouraged to be presented. The abstracts submitted for oral presentation should refer to work carried out in topics dealing to one or more of the following elements: tree, animal or pasture, and their interactions. Works dealing with environmental benefit and economic advantages of planting/maintaining trees (and/or shrubs) on pastures are also welcome. Abstracts dealing specifically to the description of silvopastoral systems are encourage to be proposed for a poster presentation, although the description of innovative silvopastoral systems and practices can be also proposed for oral presentation. Results should be clearly stated in the abstract submitted. Some examples of topics of interest are: tree-pasture management and interaction, improved pastures for shading conditions, woody forage banks, animal carrying capacity, evaluation of the benefit of tree shelter for animal production and welfare, tree regeneration monitoring and promotion, control of nutrient leaching and greenhouse gases emission, carbon sequestration, silvopastoralism for the adaptation and mitigation of climate change.
25 - The scale, dynamics and multiple impacts of farmer-managed natural regeneration.
Faced with the challenges of food security in a context of population growth and climate change, farmers in, for instance, sub-Saharan Africa and South as well as Southeast Asia have invested in the protection and management of trees and bushes that naturally regenerate in their fields.This practice distinguishes itself from most other agroforestry practices in that it relies entirely on the protection and management of woody species which regenerate spontaneously on farmland. It does not require nurseries and subsequent planting. Indications are that Farmer-Managed Natural Regeneration (FMNR) has mainly emerged in a context of high population densities, which forced farmers to intensify agriculture. Abstracts are invited which look into one or more of the following aspects: the emergence, scale, dynamics, biophysical, agronomic and socio-economic impacts of FMNR. Practice shows that FMNR has a positive impact on household food and energy security, human nutrition, poverty reduction and it helps farmers to build resilience to climate change. As many countries have made pledges to restore degraded forest and landscapes (Bonn Challenge, New York Forest Declaration), contributions are also invited which look into the scaling potential of FMNR in specific countries.
26 - The revival of tree pollarding
Pollarding trees (harvesting all branches at regular intervals) was a worldwide practice adopted by farmers in all climates. Pollards provide timber, energy wood, mulching or bedding material, fodder for animals in dry or cold seasons, and much more. Several conferences on tree pollards were recently organised and attracted a large audience. Pollards are highly adapted to agroforestry systems : reduced size of the canopy that limits competition with the crops, complementarity with crops and pastures for light and belowground resources, fast regrowth due to the well established rooting system of mature trees. Pollarded trunks offer important spaces for many species of fauna to live, feed or hide. They are attractive for cave-dwelling species, insectivorous passerines and nocturnal birds of prey such as owls. In addition, they provide homes for squirrels, martens and bats, not to mention beetles, bees and other pollinating insects beneficial to agricultural production. Pollards are often trees of historic or cultural value, and sometimes are the exclusive home of endangered species, as they mimic old trees that no longer exist in managed forest. Exciting innovations in pollarding management have recently emerged, including the mechanization of tree pollarding to save on labour cost. By exploring traditional use of pollards, as well as illustrating innovative management approaches, this session will question the benefits of integrating pollarding into modern farming practices, including its role in enhancing biodiversity, carbon capture, biomass production, and water conservation.
27 - EverGreen agriculture
“EverGreen Agriculture (EVA) is a form of more intensive farming that integrates specific tree species into crop and livestock production systems at the field, farm, and landscape scales to create more sustainable and productive agricultural systems. EVA has called attention to opportunities for sustained food crop production supported by low to medium densities of trees with specifically desirable properties. The degree to which existing ‘successes’ can be extrapolated and replicated elsewhere has become a focus for scientific debate. For the session we welcome abstracts that add empirical evidence, analyses of the likely validity domain of the experience so far, and evaluations of how relevant policies has been, and can be, influenced.”.
Biophysics of agroforestry systems
28 - Agroforestry and agroecology: opportunities and challenges
An agroforestry approach fits well with agroecological food production systems (organic, biodynamic, permaculture etc.), applying ecological principles and practices to the design and management of agroecosystems, and integrating the long-term protection of natural resources as an element of food, fuel and fibre production. Farmers of agroecological systems are familiar with managing more complex systems, relying on diversity within the system to deliver ecosystem services such as pest control and maintaining fertility. However, there are challenges to managing agroforestry systems with an agroecological approach, particularly with regards competition for limited resources such as nutrients, and weed control within the tree rows. This session will explore the opportunities and challenges that combining agroforestry and agroecological farming can generate.
29 - Tree genetic resources for agroforestry systems
Trees - constituting diverse species, their diverse genes, diverse populations and their land races - are the "first resource" of agroforestry systems. Many of these trees are of key importance for improving livelihoods of millions of smallholders through the provision of important products such as fodder, food, fuel, medicine and timber, and environmental services including soil health and fertility, and carbon sequestration. Their appropriate management is fundamental to devising productive and sustainable agroforestry landscapes while also supporting their restoration. The objectives of this session are to provide the state of art knowledge on advances, key lessons learnt and the needs for future areas pertaining to:
1. Safeguarding tree genetic resources in anthropized forest and farming systems, exploring how to best preserve and promote diversity and ensure its continued availability for use
2. Tree domestication, identifying promising wild tree species and bringing them into cultivation, as well as improving the performance of already domesticated trees
3. Tree planting material delivery, investigating how to ensure that the right material reaches growers
30 - Agroforestry: pests, diseases and weeds
Agroforestry systems (AFS) are biodiverse, with several vegetational strata, where complex interactions occur. AFS can impact the development of pests, diseases and weeds, through multiple interacting mechanisms, i.e. microclimate modifications, soil quality improvement, host plant physiology changes, permanent shelter for invertebrates (beneficials, pests, others), alternate sources of disease inocula, and others, taking place at different scales (plot, farm, landscape). These mechanisms can lead to the regulation of pests, pathogens and weeds, or conversely increase their populations, depending on their specific requirements. Structure and management of AFS are thus essential for optimizing the functioning of the system, by promoting desirable mechanisms while weakening undesirable ones. One option to assess the performance of AFS in terms of pest, disease and weed regulation is to quantify yield losses and quality losses of products in the system. In this session, authors will present the diversity of AFS effects on pests, diseases, and weeds, and the main mechanisms involved at different scales, and how management can help regulate noxious populations and reduce losses.
31 - Roots issues in agroforestry
Interactions between tree and crop root systems are poorly understood in agroforestry systems, yet are crucial for the success of co-existing crops. Although access to resources of water and nutrients can be enhanced by a greater extension of fine roots in space and through time, major competition can occur between tree and crop roots for the same resources. Appropriate management can help to reduce this competition and even stimulate facilitative and complementary interactions. Management tools include suitable species selection, spacing, timing of sowing, mulch applications, shoot pruning, and ploughing or root pruning. Patterns of root activity around individual plants also differ between species; understanding these patterns may help to avoid excessive competition and unproductive nutrient losses in agroforestry systems through suitable spacing and fertiliser placement. In this session, we will discuss: what are the specific interactions between root systems of different tree and crop species and how can these interactions be managed? How does the biological and physical soil environment influence root system interactions? Can belowground interactions between species be included in growth and production models?
32 - Biophysical modelling of interactions in agroforestry
Models are increasingly applied in agroforestry for scientific discovery, farmer decision support and policy advice. In the face of changing climate, such models must be able to project field, farm and food system performance across a wide range of environmental and socioeconomic conditions. However, modelling of agroforestry systems is still facing many challenges among which their complexity including interactions between various components, the large spatial domains covered by trees and crops in both horizontal and vertical directions, the long-life spans of trees and differences in their management. To add to the complexity, growth resources sharing between components of the systems occurs simultaneously above (light and water) and below (nutrients and water) for a range of outputs (including provisioning, supporting and regulating services), all of which should be simulated for a comprehensive understanding of the overall system impacts. Thus, the objectives of this session are) to provide the state of art on advances in agroforestry modelling on how system components interact considering the large number of interacting factors (soil, climate, species, management); b) to identify key lessons learnt on which to base decision support tools for key stakeholders; c) to identify needs for future agroforestry model improvements and gaps in knowledge for future research directions.
33 - Open Session
Agroforestry is much more than what was included in the 32 parallel sessions. Feel free to submit here any proposal that do not fit properly in the thematic sessions. If a new topic of high interest emerges, we may turn it into a full session. We are well aware that many topics are missing in the thematic sessions : specialty agroforestry systems (such as bamboos, rattan, silkworm production, and many more), agroforestry systems dedicated to energy production, allelopathy effects in agroforestry, and many more. This session is open to all your suggestions, feel free to open our eyes on all aspects of agroforestry.
Last update: 3 July 2018