The Conversation Articles by CAWR

Monday 01 January 2018

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The Conversation articles written by cawr researchers

The Conversation is a hugely popular and influential platform for academic comment as an expert voice to address a global audience. Researchers at The Centre for Agroecology, Water and Resilience have been writing articles in relation to current affairs and by discussing their views as experts in the field.


Brown muddy lake

Why it’s so hard to detect the fingerprints of global warming on monsoon rains

Jonathan Eden 

The devastating floods in the Indian state of Kerala are a stark reminder of the vulnerability of the world’s most densely populated regions to weather and climate phenomena. In addition to the tragic loss of several hundred lives, widespread floods driven by unusually high and persistent monsoon rains have severely impacted the region’s fragile infrastructure and displaced more than a million people. Only in recent days has the Indian government been able to understand the full extent of an estimated US$3 billion worth of damage.

social supermarket shelves

How social supermarkets are filling a gap in austerity Britain

Lopa Saxena

Social supermarkets have emerged in Britain in the past five years as a response to food poverty and food waste. These non-charitable initiatives sell food “surplus” to people on low incomes at heavily discounted prices, and provide social support.

Close up of pumpkins, squash and courgettes

We know how food production needs to change if crisis is to be avoided – so why isn’t this happening?

Nina Moeller & Michel Pimbert 

As the world races toward a projected 9 billion inhabitants, the failings of dominant food systems are impossible to deny. Current food production methods are severely polluting. They are the cause of malnutrition. They are also inequitable, and unjustifiably wasteful. And they are concentrated in the hands of few corporations. Entangled in the multiple crises humanity is facing, establishing global food security is considered a key challenge of our time.



sunflowers growing

Poor drainage in slums and refugee camps can be lethal – we must do better

Sue Charlesworth 

If your main worry about puddles is that you might absent-mindedly wander into one and get your feet wet, consider yourself lucky. Standing water can be a breeding ground for mosquitoes and other insects which can carry diseases such as zika, dengue or chikungunya, and therefore puddles represent a serious threat to human health in much of the world. Already vulnerable people are most at risk, particularly those living in favelas, informal settlements and refugee camps where drainage is poor or non-existent.



yellow corn fields

Farmers would do better to understand the land than grow GM crops

Julia Wright 

Suppose your relationship is falling apart and you want to save it. To find the best counsellor, you might search online or ask your friends. It’s no different in agriculture. The rational response to any food or farming dilemma is to test and compare different options to see which is most effective as a solution.