Investigating local policy instruments for different types of urban agriculture in four European cities: A case study analysis on the use and effectiveness of the applied policy instruments

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Over the last decades, urban agriculture (UA) and controlled environmental agriculture (CEA) have been growing in many urban areas of the world to supply fresh food locally and to provide multiple benefits for the sustainable development of urban landscapes. Municipal policies and regulatory tools are increasingly employed to support UA/CEA and minimize practical challenges. However, especially in Europe, there is a lack of systematic reviews that evaluate the impacts of city-level food policies for UA/CEA and their effectiveness as perceived by local responsible actors. To address this gap, this study presents a qualitative overview of municipal policies that affect UA/CEA. We reviewed more than 83 policy documents and manuscripts and performed an online structured survey targeting key local managers or employees of UA and innovative CEA systems in four EU cities – Barcelona (Spain), Lyon (France), Trieste and Udine (Italy). We assessed policy tools, especially for three identified types of UA (allotment gardens, community gardens and closed spaces using CEA) by mainly focusing on public and private institutions and including aspects concerning land use planning, health and environmental policies. The findings demonstrate how the four cities’ municipal governments specifically designed and combined a multiplicity of policy instruments to enable, regulate and acknowledge UA/CEA as part of the urban metabolism and landscape. The policy instruments were shaped by different local governance and institutional structures as well as by the local actors and community practitioners and their growing interest in UA/CEA.

Original languageEnglish
Article number106695
JournalLand Use Policy
Number of pages17
Publication statusPublished - 2023

Bibliographical note

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© 2023 The Authors

    Research areas

  • Controlled-environment agriculture, Government, Policy effects, Local, Municipal policies, Urban agriculture

ID: 347890720