I am interested in the city and its chaos, but also in rural areas and the food production that often takes place there. Urban and rural areas come together in urban agriculture. As a sociologist I am most of all interested in finding out what moves people, how they make their choices, and how they live together. That's why I studied a number of community gardens in the Netherlands for my PhD research. I studied to what extent these community gardens lead to social cohesion. I also studied to what extent we can see community gardens as expressions of a new, alternative food movement.
In my work as a researcher I also work on urban agriculture, albeit in a broader fashion, and work on multifunctional agriculture. For me these are two sides of the same coin; it is about bringing the city and the countryside together. On the one hand it is about agriculture becoming more responsive to society's needs, on the other about a renewed interest of urbanites in food and where it comes from.
Fields of expertise
- Urban agriculture
- Rural areas and food production
- Social cohesion
- Multifunctional agriculture
- Urban-Rural relations
- Sustainable development