Dancing in the monsoon. A still from Roland Joffé's City of Joy (1992)
Grieneisen and Zhang describe the recent “striking growth in funding and publication of climate change research” in a 2011 piece in Nature Climate Change. They point out, “A deeper understanding of current climate change and the mitigation of its potential future effects are among the greatest challenges facing modern science and society as a whole.”
So far, so obvious.
Equally obvious is how problematic it is to access the scholarly literature (I can’t for instance, get into Grieneisen and Zhang’s full text!), especially for independent researchers, grassroots practitioners or interdisciplinary researchers whose institutions may not necessarily subscribe to all the journals they require.
So here’s an initiative that makes a tiny, time-limited contribution: Taylor and Francis are providing free access to 140 articles on climate change picked from within their journals until the 31st of May 2012.
This won’t give everyone everything they need or want to read, but it’s something.
To access the articles, register here. Once your registration is confirmed, go here.
In the coming days and weeks, we’d like to identify a selection of papers that pertain to climate change impacts and adaptation within Ecocultures. It’d be great if our readers could help! If you do get a chance to access this trove of articles and pull up something that is relevant, please let us know via a comment to this post or on our Facebook page.
Abstract: Almost every ecosystem has been amended so that plants and animals can be used as food, fibre, fodder, medicines, traps and weapons. Historically, wild plants and animals were sole dietary components for hunter–gatherer and forager cultures. Today, they remain key to many agricultural communities. The mean use of wild foods by agricultural and forager communities in 22 countries of Asia and Africa (36 studies) is 90–100 species per location. Aggregate country estimates can reach 300–800 species (e.g. India, Ethiopia, Kenya). The mean use of wild species is 120 per community for indigenous communities in both industrialized and developing countries. Many of these wild foods are actively managed, suggesting there is a false dichotomy around ideas of the agricultural and the wild: hunter–gatherers and foragers farm and manage their environments, and cultivators use many wild plants and animals. Yet, provision of and access to these sources of food may be declining as natural habitats come under increasing pressure from development, conservation-exclusions and agricultural expansion. Despite their value, wild foods are excluded from official statistics on economic values of natural resources. It is clear that wild plants and animals continue to form a significant proportion of the global food basket, and while a variety of social and ecological drivers are acting to reduce wild food use, their importance may be set to grow as pressures on agricultural productivity increase.
Citation: Bharucha, Z. and Pretty, J. 2010. The roles and values of wild foods in agricultural systems. Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society (B). 365(1554): 2913-2926
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