The agricultural sector in developing countries is one of the most vulnerable sectors in terms of climate change and water scarcity. Iran is one of the Middle Eastern countries facing a growing water crisis. For instance, Rafsanjan County, located in the Province of Kerman, is losing its pistachio orchards to water shortage, climate change and high temperatures. Additionally, the environment is negatively affected by unsustainable agricultural practices, which aggravate the water crisis in the region. In the past years, these practices not only led to a water crisis but also caused a number of problems for the city and residents of Rafsanjan. In order to overcome the challenges of the agricultural sector in Rafsanjan, several approaches have been taken by the national government, local authorities, private sectors and social organisations. Modernisation of agricultural sector in Rafsanjan and transition to high-tech polyculture are the main strategies which have been followed by the authorities. This study analyses the actor-network of the transformation in the agricultural sector as well as tends to understand the impact of development policies and plans in this transition trajectories. Additionally, the thesis attempts to identify both the barriers and driving forces of each strategy. This research draws on the concept of Translation of Transition to analyse the technology-driven transition. Therefore, the interactions among social and materials entities and configuration of their relationships during the transition trajectories have been studied. Using the conceptual framework of translation of transition, the transition process has been divided into three stages a) ‘’disentanglement of the incumbent sociotechnical regime under pressure from the landscape’’; b) ‘’punctualisation process of novelties’’; and c) ‘’re-entanglement of punctualised actor-networks and the creation of a new sociotechnical regime’’. This research project is exploratory case study research and uses a mixed quantitative and qualitative data collection method. The data in this research has been gathered through field research, literature reviews survey and in-depth interviews with farmers, planners, researchers and policy makers in Rafsanjan. The principles of the Actor-Network Theory have been used in the methodological framework. Therefore, the roles of both human and non-human actors have been investigated, and the relationship between actors and their integration has been studied. The results of the study show that the actors with higher power (the actant related to government) are more successful than niche developers and knowledge institutes (e.g. universities) due to the top-down policy of Iran. Based on the analysis “Jihad agriculture organization", "10-year plan for the development of greenhouses", the public relation office of Jihad agriculture organization was defined as the focal actor, the obligatory passage point of other actors involved in transition processes. The actor network of transition in the agricultural sector of Rafsanjan tends to shift to a polyculture agriculture due to the minimisation of the social, environmental and economic issues of agricultural practices. The findings of this research suggest that the elimination of pistachio fields within the city created social and environmental problems and limited the cultivation of the pistachio to peri-urban areas with fertilised soil and appropriate conditions for producing the high-quality pistachio. The pistachio farms inside cities can be replaced with high-tech polyculture agricultural practices. Hydroponics cultivation methods are among the most appropriate high-tech systems used by experts and authorities. These new technologies can also be considered as a job creation opportunity for local people.

Agricultural transition and regional development in Rafsanjan. A technology-driven approach in a drought affected county / Hosseinifarhangi, SARA ALSADAT. - (2020 Jun 25). [10.25432/hosseinifarhangi-sara-alsadat_phd2020-06-25]

Agricultural transition and regional development in Rafsanjan. A technology-driven approach in a drought affected county

HOSSEINIFARHANGI, SARA ALSADAT
2020

Abstract

The agricultural sector in developing countries is one of the most vulnerable sectors in terms of climate change and water scarcity. Iran is one of the Middle Eastern countries facing a growing water crisis. For instance, Rafsanjan County, located in the Province of Kerman, is losing its pistachio orchards to water shortage, climate change and high temperatures. Additionally, the environment is negatively affected by unsustainable agricultural practices, which aggravate the water crisis in the region. In the past years, these practices not only led to a water crisis but also caused a number of problems for the city and residents of Rafsanjan. In order to overcome the challenges of the agricultural sector in Rafsanjan, several approaches have been taken by the national government, local authorities, private sectors and social organisations. Modernisation of agricultural sector in Rafsanjan and transition to high-tech polyculture are the main strategies which have been followed by the authorities. This study analyses the actor-network of the transformation in the agricultural sector as well as tends to understand the impact of development policies and plans in this transition trajectories. Additionally, the thesis attempts to identify both the barriers and driving forces of each strategy. This research draws on the concept of Translation of Transition to analyse the technology-driven transition. Therefore, the interactions among social and materials entities and configuration of their relationships during the transition trajectories have been studied. Using the conceptual framework of translation of transition, the transition process has been divided into three stages a) ‘’disentanglement of the incumbent sociotechnical regime under pressure from the landscape’’; b) ‘’punctualisation process of novelties’’; and c) ‘’re-entanglement of punctualised actor-networks and the creation of a new sociotechnical regime’’. This research project is exploratory case study research and uses a mixed quantitative and qualitative data collection method. The data in this research has been gathered through field research, literature reviews survey and in-depth interviews with farmers, planners, researchers and policy makers in Rafsanjan. The principles of the Actor-Network Theory have been used in the methodological framework. Therefore, the roles of both human and non-human actors have been investigated, and the relationship between actors and their integration has been studied. The results of the study show that the actors with higher power (the actant related to government) are more successful than niche developers and knowledge institutes (e.g. universities) due to the top-down policy of Iran. Based on the analysis “Jihad agriculture organization", "10-year plan for the development of greenhouses", the public relation office of Jihad agriculture organization was defined as the focal actor, the obligatory passage point of other actors involved in transition processes. The actor network of transition in the agricultural sector of Rafsanjan tends to shift to a polyculture agriculture due to the minimisation of the social, environmental and economic issues of agricultural practices. The findings of this research suggest that the elimination of pistachio fields within the city created social and environmental problems and limited the cultivation of the pistachio to peri-urban areas with fertilised soil and appropriate conditions for producing the high-quality pistachio. The pistachio farms inside cities can be replaced with high-tech polyculture agricultural practices. Hydroponics cultivation methods are among the most appropriate high-tech systems used by experts and authorities. These new technologies can also be considered as a job creation opportunity for local people.
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Agricultural transition and regional development in Rafsanjan. A technology-driven approach in a drought affected county / Hosseinifarhangi, SARA ALSADAT. - (2020 Jun 25). [10.25432/hosseinifarhangi-sara-alsadat_phd2020-06-25]
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Descrizione: PhD dissertation - Sara A Hosseinifarhangi
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11578/287418
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