How can we build an evidence base for permaculture? British Ecological Society (BES) Agricultural Ecology SIG

2 hour workshop.

An open meeting of the BES Agricultural Ecology group on the theme of "How can we build an evidence-base for permaculture?" This will be a two hour session.

Initial SHORT presentations

  • Short (5 minute) presentations by practitioners on their permaculture approach / their ideas on testing the impact of their approach (no. TBA - but we would like to alert practitioners to this session in advance so that we can identify at least 6 - 10 people who will prepare a five minute talk for the session).
  • Short (5 minute) presentation on a conference to be held in 2016 on this topic.

Structured discussion session

  • Round table discussion between practitioners and scientists on how best to build the evidence base
  • Initiation of a working group to develop a participatory research platform

11:30-11:40 Welcome and Introduction

11:40 - 12:15 Practitioner research presentations (plus questions/discussion)

12:15-13:15 Developing the evidence base (participatory workshop)

13:15-13:30 Summary of decisions and next steps identified 


Naomi is plant ecologist with a passion for growing her own food.  She lectures in Ecology and Sustainability at the University of Cumbria.  She also works for the Permaculture Association (Britain) on the Next Big Step – a global consultation asking ‘where next?’ in Permaculture.  Since her PhD in Forest Ecology in 2004, her research has taken her up mountains and through tropical forests.  Most recently she has found great satisfaction closer to home understanding her local food-producing plant communities.


I am an agro-ecologist, who spent many years working on the impacts of farming on biodiversity, but am increasingly interested in the resilience of farming to environmental change, and the concept of sustainable intensification.


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