Seeds of Sustainability
6 x 9
58 photos and illustrations
6 x 9
58 photos and illustrations
Seeds of Sustainability is a groundbreaking analysis of agricultural development and transitions toward more sustainable management in one region. An invaluable resource for researchers, policymakers, and students alike, it examines new approaches to make agricultural landscapes healthier for both the environment and people.
The Yaqui Valley is the birthplace of the Green Revolution and one of the most intensive agricultural regions of the world, using irrigation, fertilizers, and other technologies to produce some of the highest yields of wheat anywhere. It also faces resource limitations, threats to human health, and rapidly changing economic conditions. In short, the Yaqui Valley represents the challenge of modern agriculture: how to maintain livelihoods and increase food production while protecting the environment.
Renowned scientist Pamela Matson and colleagues from leading institutions in the U.S. and Mexico spent fifteen years in the Yaqui Valley in Sonora, Mexico addressing this challenge. Seeds of Sustainability represents the culmination of their research, providing unparalleled information about the causes and consequences of current agricultural methods. Even more importantly, it shows how knowledge can translate into better practices, not just in the Yaqui Valley, but throughout the world.
"...cutting edge...rigorous...demonstrates both originality and critical reflectiveness...almost uniquely in our collective experience, it speaks seriously, frankly, and insightfully to the challenges of institutionalizing the sort of work it reports on."
ESA Sustainability Science Award
"...the substance is ripe for harvesting."
"This book...provides ample evidence that moving towards sustainability requires the successful identification, assessment and management of risk and uncertainty...it is knowledge-intensive."
"[This book] tells the 'human-environment' story of agriculture in this valley between 1993 and 2008....The contributors/researchers try to understand not only the challenges to the people and ecosystems of the valley, but how to address those challenges."
"Matson has provided a pathway for use-inspired, place-based research grounded in the realities of a historically important region. The book is destined to become a classic and oft-cited resource in the growing sustainability science literature."
"Seeds of Sustainability would make a great book for introducing the ideals and complexity of sustainability to young scientists and curious citizens."
Natural Areas Journal
Timeline for the Yaqui Valley, 1890–2000
PART I. The Birthplace of the Green Revolution
Chapter 1. Why the Yaqui Valley? An Introduction
Chapter 2. A Brief History of the Yaqui Valley
PART II. Interdisciplinary Perspectives on Sustainability
Chapter 3. Looking for Win-Wins in Intensive Agriculture
Chapter 4. Ecosystems and Land-Use Change in the Yaqui Valley: Does Agricultural Intensification "Spare Land for Nature"?
Chapter 5. Linking Knowledge with Action for Sustainable Development: A Case Study of Change and Effectiveness
Chapter 6. Exploring Vulnerability in the Yaqui Valley Human-Environment System
Chapter 7. From Wheat to Waves and Back Again: Connections between the Yaqui Valley and the Gulf of California
PART III. Elements of the Yaqui Valley System
Chapter 8. The Yaqui Valley's Agricultural Transition to a More Open Economy
Chapter 9. Agricultural Research and Management at the Field Scale
Chapter 10. Nitrogen in the Yaqui Valley: Sources, Transfers, and Consequences
Chapter 11. Water Resources Management in the Yaqui Valley
PART IV. Conclusions
Chapter 12. Lessons Learned
Seeds of Sustainability was recognized with the Ecological Society of America's 2013 Sustainability Science Award.