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Can’t see the fruit for the trees : how social norms and discourses affect fruit-picking behaviour in Copenhagen

Yates, Erika LU (2014) In Master Thesis Series in Environmental Studies and Sustainability Science MESM01 20141
LUCSUS (Lund University Centre for Sustainability Studies)
Abstract
People are moving from rural to urban areas at an unprecedented rate, resulting in a high concentration of people subsisting on outside resources being constantly brought in. This presents a variety of complex sustainability problems. It is a resource-intensive system susceptible to supply shocks which could threaten food security. Many foods grow in cities, such as fruits on city trees, so utilising these resources is a step towards reducing this vulnerability and improving urban sustainability
and livability. I examined the case of Copenhagen, where fruit-picking is permitted but is not a widespread activity. In order to investigate why this is and what could be done to get people to use these resources, I conducted a discursive... (More)
People are moving from rural to urban areas at an unprecedented rate, resulting in a high concentration of people subsisting on outside resources being constantly brought in. This presents a variety of complex sustainability problems. It is a resource-intensive system susceptible to supply shocks which could threaten food security. Many foods grow in cities, such as fruits on city trees, so utilising these resources is a step towards reducing this vulnerability and improving urban sustainability
and livability. I examined the case of Copenhagen, where fruit-picking is permitted but is not a widespread activity. In order to investigate why this is and what could be done to get people to use these resources, I conducted a discursive analysis of themes resulting from analysis of the municipal website, interviews with municipal employees and foraging groups and surveys with Copenhagen residents and self-identified fruit-pickers. Results showed that fruit-picking is largely excluded from the current discourse, and that the practice of fruit-picking is therefore largely perceived by residents to break social norms. The diffusion of innovations theory is used to conceptualise the process of change individuals go through within society in order to adopt an innovation, which in this case, refers to fruitpicking. Suggestions are made on how the municipality can help favour the adoption of this innovation, with normative confirmation of the legitimacy of the activity being a key factor for residents seeing it
as a valued activity. Foraging groups also play a role in spreading and normalising the idea of fruit picking. Adoption of this innovation would result in a more resilient food system and improved social and environmental sustainability. (Less)
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author
Yates, Erika LU
supervisor
organization
course
MESM01 20141
year
type
H2 - Master's Degree (Two Years)
subject
keywords
fruit trees, sustainability science, foraging, social norms, diffusion of innovations
publication/series
Master Thesis Series in Environmental Studies and Sustainability Science
report number
2014:022
language
English
id
4463608
date added to LUP
2014-06-16 10:43:46
date last changed
2014-06-16 10:43:46
@misc{4463608,
  abstract     = {People are moving from rural to urban areas at an unprecedented rate, resulting in a high concentration of people subsisting on outside resources being constantly brought in. This presents a variety of complex sustainability problems. It is a resource-intensive system susceptible to supply shocks which could threaten food security. Many foods grow in cities, such as fruits on city trees, so utilising these resources is a step towards reducing this vulnerability and improving urban sustainability
and livability. I examined the case of Copenhagen, where fruit-picking is permitted but is not a widespread activity. In order to investigate why this is and what could be done to get people to use these resources, I conducted a discursive analysis of themes resulting from analysis of the municipal website, interviews with municipal employees and foraging groups and surveys with Copenhagen residents and self-identified fruit-pickers. Results showed that fruit-picking is largely excluded from the current discourse, and that the practice of fruit-picking is therefore largely perceived by residents to break social norms. The diffusion of innovations theory is used to conceptualise the process of change individuals go through within society in order to adopt an innovation, which in this case, refers to fruitpicking. Suggestions are made on how the municipality can help favour the adoption of this innovation, with normative confirmation of the legitimacy of the activity being a key factor for residents seeing it
as a valued activity. Foraging groups also play a role in spreading and normalising the idea of fruit picking. Adoption of this innovation would result in a more resilient food system and improved social and environmental sustainability.},
  author       = {Yates, Erika},
  keyword      = {fruit trees,sustainability science,foraging,social norms,diffusion of innovations},
  language     = {eng},
  note         = {Student Paper},
  series       = {Master Thesis Series in Environmental Studies and Sustainability Science},
  title        = {Can’t see the fruit for the trees : how social norms and discourses affect fruit-picking behaviour in Copenhagen},
  year         = {2014},
}