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Revista de Ciencias Ambientales

On-line version ISSN 2215-3896Print version ISSN 1409-2158


SAMPER, Mario. Area-based Family Farming Systems, Agrobiodiversity and Climate Change: a Conceptual, Area-based Approach. Ciencias Ambientales [online]. 2019, vol.53, n.2, pp.189-198. ISSN 2215-3896.

In the framework of the systems approach to area-based development, this essay explores interrelations among family farming, conserving and valuing agrobiodiversity, and innovative adaptation to climate change, such that it also contributes to mitigation. The discussion builds on the concept of area-based family-farming systems (AFFS) -complex sets of production systems relying primarily on household labor, linked via social networks and value chains, transforming the natural resource base of each rural area through agricultural and other practices, and generating historically constructed collective identities, livelihoods and ways of life. These systems have various degrees of agroecological diversity, but tend to be less specialized than mechanized or agroindustrial farming, and are often related to varied landscapes, with more cultivated and wild species. Some AFFS adapt more readily to medium- or long-term climate change and are more resilient to extreme events due to increased climate variability. Strengthening certain AFFS as development engines in areas where they play or can play a major role, together with innovation in accordance with their characteristics, requirements and potential, can contribute to comprehensive sustainability both of those AFFS and of said rural areas. This also requires participatory governance and management of local development; a favorable political/institutional environment; appropriate technical support and resources, and area-based innovation systems or networks.

Keywords : area-based approach; agrobiodiversity; climate change; family farming.

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