Sustainable care farming in Switzerland

Project C1-37

The term ‘care farming’ refers to paid family integrated care for children, juveniles and adults on farms, for educative or therapeutic reasons or due to other care dependencies. It is an interface of care and agriculture − two fields in crisis. In both domains the society and stakeholders are confronted with big challenges: The care crisis on the one hand, is manifested in a growing demand for care work laborer and unaffordable costs; Swiss family farms on the other hand, have to be sustainable and are confronted with growing economic and social pressure. Taking this interface into account allows for new insights and a better understanding of social sustainability from a gender perspective.

To date, care farming in Switzerland has not yet been researched systematically. It is a very complex field and coordination among the diverse stakeholders, kinds of services and training opportunities is poor. A transdisciplinary approach is essential in order to identify and analyze the most relevant facets of care farming as well as the need for transformation.

The aim of this 15-month pre-project is to form a sound basis for a prospective research project. Therefore, the Interdisciplinary Centre for Gender Studies (ICFG) of the University of Bern in strong collaboration with non-academic stakeholders will develop a novel transdisciplinary approach to investigate care farming in Switzerland. A further objective of the pre-project is to initiate a network platform bringing together the multiple non-academic stakeholders and scientists. Knowledge sharing between academia and practice will also be fostered by co-teaching with stakeholders in courses of the ICFG.

Project leader
Dr. Michèle Amacker
University of Bern
Interdisciplinary Centre for Gender Studies (ICFG)

Involved universities
University of Bern

Project duration
1.9.2015 - 30.11.2016


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