My research combines social-ecological knowledge with systems analysis techniques, and a first-hand understanding of farming realties in the temperate and tropical regions of the world, for the design of ecologically intensive agroecosystems. New forms of agriculture are urgently needed to be able to secure access to diverse and healthy food for 9 billon people in 40 years, with the resources currently available on the planet, while curtailing current environmental degradation. Agroecology can be a source of both solutions and preventive actions for tomorrow’s problems of global agriculture. My aim is to develop agroecological knowledge able to contribute alternative solutions to the major challenges facing current agriculture, namely:
- global food security;
- provision of ecological services;
- food and environmental health;
- adaptation to climate change; and
- preservation of the biological and cultural diversity of agricultural landscapes.
My research integrates processes across scales and disciplines, from the soil or the field plot to the landscape, and the role of human agency in agroecosystem design, from individual decision-making to collective action. I approach agroecology from the perspective of actors, landscapes and systems design.
Examples of recent publications
Tittonell, 2014. Ecological intensification – sustainable by nature. Current Opinion on Environmental Sustainability 8, 53–61.
Speelman, E.N., García-Barrios, L.E., Groot, J.C.J., Tittonell, P., 2014. Gaming for smallholder participation in the design of more sustainable agricultural landscapes. Agric. Syst. 126, 62-75.
Rossing, W.A.H., Modernel, P., Tittonell, P., 2014. Diversity in organic and agroecological farming systems for mitigation of climate change impact, with examples from Latin America. In J. Fuhrer & P. Gregory (Eds.), Climate change impact and adaptation in agricultural systems (CABI Climate Change Series, 5). CAB International 2014.
Tittonell, P., 2014. Livelihood strategies, resilience and transformability in African agroecosystems. Agric. Syst. 126, 3-14.
Tittonell, P., Giller, K.E., 2013. When yield gaps are poverty traps: The paradigm of ecological intensification in African smallholder agriculture. Field Crop Res. 143, 76-90.
Tittonell, P., Scopel, E., Andrieu, N., Posthumus, H., Mapfumo, P., Corbeels, M., van Halsema, G.E., Lahmar, R., Lugandu, S., Rakotoarisoa, J., Mtambanengwe, F., Pound, B., Chikowo, R., Naudin, K., Triomphe, B., Mkomwa, S., 2012. Agroecology-based aggradation-conservation agriculture (ABACO): Targeting innovations to combat soil degradation and food insecurity in semi-arid Africa. Field Crop Res. 132, 168-174.
Doré, T., Makowski, D., Malézieux, E., Munier-Jolain, N., Tchamitchian, M., Tittonell, P., 2011. Facing up to the paradigm of ecological intensification in agronomy: revisiting methods, concepts and knowledge. European Journal of Agronomy 34, 197-210.