CH-5.4 :: Awareness-raising

Relevance of the issue and justification of the need for research:
Soil protection, protection of cultivated land, sustainable production and consumption are issues that do not rate high on the radar of the population at large. Little notice is taken of the work that farmers do for the general public. This means that there is a need to establish knowledge, on how to raise public awareness of these issues. Moreover, many farmers fear that ecological management means production losses. Strategies must therefore be developed to show how farmers could get convinced to strive for a more sustainable production. In the past, the OLMA and BEA agricultural trade fairs were events where genuine exchanges between farmers and non-farmers took place. Today, these agricultural trade fairs are more dedicated to entertainment. Such real interaction between farmers and non-farmers should be restored so that the two sides have the chance to understand each other better.
Specific research topics and knowledge gaps:
Impossible to assign to the overarching themes
• Awareness-raising initiatives on sustainability issues among the general public: Develop approaches which show how to raise awareness about soil protection, protection of cultivated land, sustainable production and consumption within the general public.
• Awareness-raising initiatives on sustainability issues among farmers: Develop strategies on how to convince farmers to produce more ecologically sound and cause less damage to the soil (e.g. smaller tractors). Develop approaches that motivate farmers to apply and implement new knowledge.
• Strategies to bring farmers and non-farmers closer together: Develop strategies on how farmers and non-farmers could be brought closer together and therefore get a better understanding of one another’s view.
• Soil biodiversity and bioindication: From complex thinking to simple acting: (Havlicek, 2012)
• Motivations for implementation of ecological compensation areas on Swiss lowland farms: (Home; Balmer et al., 2014)

• University/research institute, national/regional/local authority, workshop participants