Networking biodiversity management in agriculture: challenges and research avenues

Vanesse Labeyrie, Martine Antona, Jacques Baudry, Örjan Bodin, Sophie Caillon, Christian Leclerc, Christophe Le Page, Sélim Louafi, Juliette Mariel, François Massol


Meeting the challenge of building more sustainable and resilient food systems passes through the development of forms of agriculture based on the management of agrobiodiversity, i.e. the diversity of living organisms contributing to agriculture. The development of dynamic management approaches to enhance the generation and diffusion of agrobiodiversity is a major challenge in this perspective, which largely relies on actor networks. Research on actor networks involved in agrobiodiversity management expanded over the last decade, with a main focus on crop diversity. This research significantly contributed to describe the characteristics of these networks, identify the actors involved, and entangle the processes driving their interactions. However, knowledge is limited concerning how networks composition and structure affects the management outcomes, i.e. agrobiodiversity dynamics. In this presentation, we first expose the challenges for social network research toward the accompaniment of biodiversity-based agriculture, focusing on agrobiodiversity generation and diffusion. We then present a synthesis of the current state of knowledge concerning the effect of actor networks composition and structure on agrobiodiversity management outcomes, and propose a framework for guiding future research on this issue. We finally discuss the operational application of this research to the accompaniment of biodiversity-based agriculture.

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