Guidance learning & teaching

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Who should read the guidance report on sustainable food planning?

The report is meant for teachers, researchers, community workers and other parties who want to work on transformative changes for sustainable food systems. For this, we share with you our approach, the principles, values, and methods guiding our work, and the experience we had in sustainable food planning. The report includes a reflection of the lessons we learned by delivering an online seminar and organising intensive community participation-inspired workshops and organising Polish, Spanish, Belgian, and French Living Labs.

Our projects aim to foster the development of sustainable food systems in several ways. To inspire people to undertake transformative actions to make the food system more democratic, just, sustainable, and environmentally friendly. To build capacity by providing educational material both for an academic context and for civil society. For consulting and using the resources of the seminar a draft guidance report has been developed for consultation, which you can view here.

How can one use the teaching guidance?

This teaching guidance and the open access supporting material in the AESOP4Food wiki and webpage can be used in various ways. It can serve to (1) develop a new food planning curriculum, (2) to adapt existing educational modules to integrate the aspect of food planning, (3) to create a deeper awareness of the current development of the production and consumption of food, (4) to organise a living lab where universities and other parties work together or (5) to apply the methods and tools for practice oriented workshops and collaborative work in a community.

Developing a new food planning curriculum

For this most parts of this report are relevant. Possible steps are firstly to define the knowledge development approach, getting inspiration from chapter 4. You can make use of the phases and content of the AESOP4Food seminar in chapter 3. The new course can combine the presented materials, recordings and presentation with additional content that is tuned to the needs of the learners of the new course.You can find supporting material (presentations, recordings of lectures, reading lists) in this wiki.

Adapting existing educational modules to integrate the aspect of food planning

For existing programmes the Chapters 3, 6, and 7 are most relevant. Chapter 3 can be used for inspiration, adding material and resources to a module or course. Chapter 6 provides information for integrating participatory action learning and research into teaching, and Chapter 7 helps to select methods and tools for a course.

Creating a deeper awareness of the current development of the production and consumption of food

The content of phase 1 of the seminar ‘exploring the field of play’ in section 3.1 together with the reading list can be used as a basis for a deeper understanding of the challenges and state of things.

Organising a living lab where universities and other parties work together

If you are an academic, learner or community member seeking to develop Living Labs, or are already working within one that framework, we share our story in the hope that you will benefit from our experience and our evaluation of the four Living Lab processes we carried out. To organise a living lab calls for additional actions and competences. Chapter 6 provides insight into how one can set up a living lab and link to various modes of education and academic research. Appendix A provides detailed information on the phases of living labs. In addition to this the presentations and recordings on living labs and PALAR can be consulted. Examples of the AESOP4Food living labs and their research questions are discussed in Chapter 6 and on the wiki page of the labs. The case studies that are presented in the course on projects and the work of living labs can be helpful to learn from the experience of others.

Applying the methods and tools for practice-oriented work

The methods and tools for collaborative working, goal setting, and visioning are presented in Chapter 7. An excellent method for collaborative goal setting is the Nominal Group Technique. Further different ways for onsite and online working are presented. For collaborative monitoring and evaluation, Chapter 8 can be consulted. Important methods for analysis are power mapping and food system mapping. These are explained in Section 3.2 ‘analysing your local foodscape’ and the additional presentations and recordings in the wiki and the web page.

Engaged learners and researchers

We hope the guidance report helps you to develop knowledge and capacity building for sustainable food systems. You can download the DRAFT report here, and in October 2024 AESOP4Food will present a final version.

We experienced that one of the most important things is to inspire others to take action. And to bring about a change, sufficient knowledge and skills is essential.