Urban Agriculture: Findings From Four City Case Studies

Arne Hoel / World Bank

Urban agriculture contributes to local economic development, poverty alleviation, the social inclusion of the urban poor and women, as well as to the greening of the city and the productive reuse of urban wastes. While there is a growing awareness about the role of urban agriculture in the context of food security and poverty alleviation for urban populations, urban agriculture largely remains an informal sector that is not well integrated into agricultural policies or urban planning. Gaps in the availability of good quality, current and comparable data on the benefits and constraints of urban agriculture limit the design of relevant policies and interventions that would enhance the positive impacts for urban livelihoods and public health, as well as for the environment.

The report Urban Agriculture: Findings from Four City Case Studies showcases four cities where urban agriculture is present. Through data collected in surveys, focus group discussions, and city consultations, this study comparatively analyzes the impacts of urban agriculture on income and expenditure, food security and nutrition, and social impacts. It also provides an overview of the benefits of introducing and encouraging agricultural practices in urban areas to build cities that are green, inclusive, and sustainable. Urban agriculture, as defined in this report, encompasses both “intra-urban” as well as “peri-urban” agriculture.

Table of Contents

Executive Summary

1. Introduction and Overview

The Approach and Structure of the Report
What is Urban Agriculture?
The Challenges of Sustainable Cities
The Role of Urban Agriculture

2. Key Findings from the Four City Case Studies

Farming in the Cities
Urban Agriculture’s Contribution to Livelihood and Food Security
Constraints on Urban Agriculture Development

3. Recommendations for Decision-makers

Integrating Urban Agriculture Into the Broader Urban Development Agenda
The City Level: Promoting Local Food Systems in Integrated Urban Land Use Planning
The Value Chain: Strengthening Each Link Within the Urban Agriculture Sector
The Broader View: Beyond the City

Annex A: Methodology of the Case Studies

Annex B: Survey Questionnaire

Annex C: A Note on the Challenges of the Survey Data

Annex D: Bangalore (India) Case Study

Annex E: Accra (Ghana) Case Study

Annex F: Nairobi (Kenya) Case Study

Annex G: Lima (Peru) Case Study

Through case studies, this report analyzes the impacts of urban agriculture on income and expenditure, food security and nutrition, and social impacts.