Urban Agriculture for Sustainable Development


The United Nations predicts that over the next 25 years nearly all population growth will be in the cities of the developing world. At current rates, 60% of the world’s total population will live in cities by 2030. As the cities grow, so does the number of urban poor. Unemployment, hunger, and malnutrition are commonplace. In the big city, most of any cash income the poor might bring home goes to feeding themselves and staying alive; any food that does not have to be bought is a bonus. As a result, more and more people are attempting to grow at least some of their own food to supplement poor diets and meager incomes. But farming in the city — urban agriculture — is too often seen by municipalities as a problem to be eradicated rather than as a part of the solution to making the city and its environment more sustainable.


Today, urban agriculture is increasingly on the international agenda, recognized as part of a comprehensive solution to the problems of runaway growth of cities in developing countries.

Project stories and research results offer a cross-section of the major issues confronting urban agriculture in Latin America, the Caribbean, Africa, and the Middle East.

Many important lessons and recommendations, for city planners, politicians, policymakers, and urban farmers alike, have emerged from the pioneering research supported by IDRC.

IN_FOCUS COLLECTION > GROWING BETTER CITIES : Urban Agriculture for Sustainable Development

IDRC funds researchers in the developing world so they can build healthier, more prosperous societies
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