27 Oct 2017 All day SG1 and SG2, Alison Richard Building


Registration for this workshop is now closed.



Hyun-Gwi Park (University of Cambridge)

Martin Skrydstrup (University of Copenhagen)



Agriculture is one of the largest contributors to climate change, but is also affected by it. Thus, we face the paradox of adaptive capacity on the one hand and the facts of GHG (greenhouse gas) emissions produced by agricultural activities contributing to the problem on the other. So far, anthropological work on agriculture and climate change has overwhelmingly focused on the multiple exposures of small-scale farmers in the Global South and largely ignored agriculture as a contributor to climate change. Accordingly, we know about the vulnerabilities that farmers face and how communities respond to climate change through their ingenuity, resilience and adaptive capacities. Yet, it is not only farmers but also anthropologists who need to work against the backdrop of global climate change, as anthropologists are required to consider the global dimension in their research and description of agricultural practices. Anthropologists have shown how farmers are by no means ignorant of climate change, nor are they passive in shaping, interpreting and responding to the challenges and opportunities that might arise from climate change. However, beyond this general insight, there is much more that we need to discover.

The objective of this workshop on Agriculture in the Anthropocene is to address the question of 'adaptive capacity' in a much broader framework across a wide range of scales and empirical contexts. The workshop will bring together anthropologically-minded researchers in diverse areas of research, such as in the sciences, environmental economics, global studies, food and resource studies and human geography, in order to discuss the following topics:    

  • the form of the materiality of concrete adaptation measures to be found in local contexts from seeds to soils;
  • how socio-economic factors such as plot size, labour and markets map onto these;
  • the form of innovative agrarian-governmentalities embodied in new relationships between extension officers distributing climate science in farming contexts;
  • new forms of weather-based index insurance and new political participatory approaches;
  • the complex relationships between value and weather in agrarian products before they reach our tables and throughout the process of storage, processing, packaging and transportation
  • the agriculturalists’ perception of weather, their responses to changes in weather and their (non-)relevance to global climate change.




Supported by the Centre for Research in the Arts, Social Sciences and Humanities (CRASSH).


 Administrative assistance: events@crassh.cam.ac.uk


Unfortunately, we are unable to arrange or book accommodation for registrants. The following websites may be of help:


9.15 - 9.45


9.45 - 10.00

Welcome and Introduction

10.00 - 12.00

Session One

Yunita T. Winarto (Universitas Indonesia), Sue Walker (University of the Free State), and R. Ariefiansyah (Universitas Indonesia)

‘People, Clouds, and Roots: Farmers Learning to Adapt’


Trine My Thygaard-Nielsen (University of Copenhagen)

‘“It all comes down to climate”: The uncontrollable in the contemporary industrial Spanish-Danish vegetable chain’


Hyun-Gwi Park (University of Cambridge)

'Weather, Climate and Market Price of Watermelons in the Russian Far East'

12.00 - 13.00


13.00 - 15.00

Session Two

Dong Ju Kim (Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology)

‘Evocative Farming and Recognizing Climate Change Among Sugar Beet Farmers in Western Poland’


Daniel Ortiz Gonzalo and Andreas de Neergaard (University of Copenhagen)

‘Key entry points to enhance the adaptive capacity of smallholder crop-livestock systems to Climate Change’


Anshu Ogra (Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi)

'”Decision-Making” in the Anthropocene: Coffee growers, coffee science and adaptation strategies for climate change in South India'

15.00 - 15.30


15.30 - 17.00

Session Three

Martin Skrydstrup (University of Copenhagen)

‘The Weather Man: Anticipating El Niño on the Slopes of Mount Kenya’


Gaële Rouillé-Kielo (Université Paris Ouest Nanterre, Laboratoire Mosaïques-LAVUE)

‘Changing small-scale farmers’ practices to counter the anthropogenic transformation of a valued ecosystem: “Payments for environmental services” in Lake Naivasha basin (Kenya)’

17.00 - 18.00

Plenary Session

Agriculture and Anthropology in the Anthropocene 

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Tel: +44 1223 766886
Email enquiries@crassh.cam.ac.uk