This section welcomes high-quality and original contributions from across disciplines that assess the costs, benefits and risks for developing sustainable food systems, their reliance on natural capital and ecosystem services, and the interventions needed to put agriculture on a more sustainable path.
Agroecology and Ecosystem Services, a speciality section of Frontiers in Sustainable Food Systems, publishes original, peer reviewed research on appropriate and effective sustainable management of farming systems, including smallholder, commodity cropping, urban food production and aquaculture.
The intensified use of agrochemicals and unsustainable exploitation of natural resources has been a large contributor to environmental and social problems, including greenhouse gas emissions, water use and pollution, soil erosion, biodiversity loss, hunger and poverty. Approaches to agriculture are needed that build on ecological processes, while producing environmental and socio-economic benefits and avoiding breaching planetary boundaries. Diversified, agroecological approaches show promise in producing multi-functional benefits, and can be adapted to different scales of farming operations. Such agroecological approaches need not reject technology, but instead emphasize enhancing biodiversity and natural capital to support resilient agricultural production by harnessing ecological processes and services. A critical component of agroecology is its attention not only to the environmental components of sustainability, but also to equitable access across society to the resources needed to produce food (i.e. seed, land, infrastructure, knowledge, etc) and to the food itself. However, current policies and market forces often do not favour or promote agroecological approaches.
The Agroecology and Ecosystem Services section welcomes high-quality and original contributions that quantify the various costs, benefits and risks of different pathways to developing sustainable food systems, their reliance on natural capital and ecosystem services, and the social, political, economic, technological and ecological interventions needed to put agriculture on a more sustainable path. Interdisciplinary studies that identify constraints, thresholds and opportunities for enhancing levels of sustainability and production are particularly welcome, as are studies that balance potential positive and / or negative impacts of different pathways of agricultural development across scales of space and time. We welcome original research papers, critical reviews, policy-related articles linked to ecosystem services, thought-provoking ideas, and insightful case studies into various branches of agroecology, including its development as a science, a movement and a practice. The specialty section will thus contribute to expanding our knowledge-base, thereby promoting sustainable management of agroecosystems.
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Agroecology and Ecosystem Services welcomes submissions of the following article types: Case Report, Correction, Data Report, Editorial, General Commentary, Hypothesis and Theory, Methods, Mini Review, Opinion, Original Research, Perspective, Policy and Practice Reviews, Policy Brief, Review, Specialty Grand Challenge, Systematic Review and Technology and Code.
All manuscripts must be submitted directly to the section Agroecology and Ecosystem Services, where they are peer-reviewed by the Associate and Review Editors of the specialty section.
Articles published in the section Agroecology and Ecosystem Services will benefit from the Frontiers impact and tiering system after online publication. Authors of published original research with the highest impact, as judged democratically by the readers, will be invited by the Chief Editor to write a Frontiers Focused Review - a tier-climbing article. This is referred to as "democratic tiering". The author selection is based on article impact analytics of original research published in all Frontiers specialty journals and sections. Focused Reviews are centered on the original discovery, place it into a broader context, and aim to address the wider community across all of Sustainable Food Systems.
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