933317 Organic farming in the public debate

Lecture and seminar
Semester hours
Lecturer (assistant)
Freyer, Bernhard
Division of Organic Farming (IFÖL)
Offered in
Sommersemester 2018
Languages of instruction


The organic agriculture movement has a long history as both a participant and a subject of public debates. For example, debates over farmers’ rights, healthy food, environmental sustainability, consumer responsibilities, food labels, market access, food safety have affected and been affected by the development of the organic farming.

These debates are controversial! One of the main questions which is currently discussed under the term Organic3.0, is how the future of organic should be developed to fulfill the manifold targets of this agro-food system. Members – as well as non-members - of the organic movement have diverse opinions about how organic should be developed.

Therefore the aim of this seminar is to get a profound overview on the debate about the future development of organic and to analyse the pro and cons of this discussion via conferences / literature and qualitative interviews.

Doing so, we follow three steps:

1. Analysing, discussing and summarizing of the key papers on the future development of organic (papers will be already
available end of january 2017)(see also: Bernhard Freyer 2016. Ökologischer Landbau. Grundlagen,
Wissensstand und Herausforderungen UTB Stuttgart, 711 S.
Remark: for native english speaking students who do not know the german language: all other
literature is in english language
2. One interview with a key person in the organic / non-organic system
3. Synthesis of the findings

Facultative but highly recommended is
(a) Visiting the "Wissenschaftstagung" from 7.-10. March 2017 at TU Munich
(http://www.wissenschaftstagung.de): summarizing the most relevant findings about Organic3.0 and
related topics (https://de.scribd.com/document/286467669/Organic3-0) /
(b) the Bioaustria Bauerntage 2017 (31.1.-2.2.2017) http://www.bio-austria.at/event/bio-austria-bauerntage-2017/
(c) http://tporganics.eu/biofach-science-day-2017/ at Biofach Nürnberg 17. february - in english!

A key issue of this lecture is to profoundly learn

(a) how to prepare and make qualitative interviews,
(b) how to analyse interviews and
(c) how to write the results of a qualitative interviews.

There will be a profound training of the methods. A relevant part of the lecture time will be used for interview exercises. Pre-knowledge is of advantage but not a must. A manuscript on qualitative interviews will guide us through this process.

If you have any questions, please ask via email.

Previous knowledge expected

Basic knowledge in organic agriculture and qualitative interview methods are an advantage

Objective (expected results of study and acquired competences)

1) gain an advanced / profound knowledge of qualitative interview methods
2) gain an advanced / profound knowledge of the discourse on Organic3.0
3) be able to identify and critically reflect upon and interpret discourses in their day to day life
4) increase their confidence about presenting and discussing their own ideas and viewpoints
5) know all kind of relevant sources about qualitative interview methods and are well prepared for applying qualitative interview methods for other research cases
You can find more details like the schedule or information about exams on the course-page in BOKUonline.