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The 4th Rural Conference (IGU AGLE: Agricultural Geography and Land Engineering) will be held from March 24, 9 AM to March 26, 12 PM, 2021 (Paris Time).

Authors have been contacted to confirm participation and return an updated abstract by February 22, 2021.

Registrations are open until March, 10, 2021. Registration is free but required.

The conference will be virtual during the 3 days of plenary lectures and workshops for oral presentations.

The field trip day is canceled.

Keynote speakers

  • conferenciers


The Geography of Food: An Overview

Guy M Robinson.

Department of Geography, Environment & Population, University of Adelaide, Adelaide, South Australia. Department of Land Economy, University of Cambridge, Cambridge, UK.

This presentation deals with issues of production and consumption of food, and especially global patterns and relationships affecting who produces food, where and how, who consumes it and what links there are between producers and consumers. It provides a brief overview of the drivers of production and addresses key issues affecting food security. Amongst the various aspects of the geography of food to be addressed will be:

  • Food production, climate change and Climate Smart Agriculture
  • Agriculture 4.0 and applying high-tech approaches to increase output
  • Examples of political support mechanisms for agriculture
  • Globalisation and the rise of ‘financialisation’
  • Resistance to industrial-style food production
g robinson

Guy M Robinson is a human geographer with over 40 years experience of teaching and researching in universities in Australia, the UK, Canada and New Zealand. He has published eight books (including Geographies of Agriculture and Handbook on the Globalisation of Agriculture) over 200 papers in journals/book chapters and participated in numerous research projects. He holds degrees from the Universities of London and Oxford and has held positions at the Universities of Oxford, Edinburgh, Kingston London and South Australia before joining the University of Adelaide in 2015. He is also a Departmental Associate in the Department of Land Economy at the University of Cambridge. He is the Editor of a new journal, Research in Globalization, and previously was Editor of the international journal, Land Use Policy, for 12 years.

Food in the contemporary history of the city-country couple

Ségolène Darly. Maitresse de conférence à l'Université Paris 8, UMR LADYSS.

In capitalist urban societies (i.e. which have already moved into the post-agrarian period of their history in the sense that most individuals are wage-earners, and outside the agricultural sector) food connects eaters to food systems (living beings, the actors of their production and their tools, and the environment from which they are derived). As such, it is accused of exacerbating conflictual relationships within the city-country couple by accompanying the divorce (spatial and cognitive) between the city of the eaters and the countryside of those who get eaten. But food is also called upon, through the processes of politicisation currently at work, to re-establish a dialogue through more equitable exchanges. However, the chances of success of this project of reconciliation through food cannot be assessed without taking into account its links with the production and reproduction of the power and domination relationships that caused the rupture. In this perspective, we can return to the role of food in the evolution of peri-urban territories to discuss the possibilities of emancipation within urban-rural relations.  

S darly

Ségolène Darly is Tenured Lecturer at the Geography department of the University Paris 8 Vincennes Saint-Denis, France and member of the LADYSS-Social dynamics and Spatial Recompositions research unit. She received her PhD in geography from EHESS (Paris, France) in 2009 and MS in agronomy sciences from AgroParisTech (France). Her research and teaching deals with land-use conflicts, farm land managment, urban agriculture, land-use planning and food system social geography.

Cultivated land protection and food security under the rapid urbanization in China

Yansui LIU

Institute of Geographic Sciences and Natural Resources Research, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing, China.

Cultivated land protection and food security are the foundations of national security as cultivated land and food involve national economy and the people's livelihood. The global intertwined problems of population, food, water and environment, have become prominent in the sustainable development of contemporary human society. As the world’s largest developing country, China underwent rapid urbanization with rate increased from 17.8% in 1978 to 60.6% in 2019. During the same period, grain production increased from 305 million tons to 664 million tons and the per capita grain output increased from 317 kg/person to 474 kg/person. China has to feed 20% of the global population (1.4 billion) with only about 7% of its arable land. Although China implements the strictest farmland protection system and the strategy of “Storing Grain in the Land and Technology”, it remains to be an underdeveloped economy with the basic national conditions of a large population, weak foundation and poor agricultural foundation and there are still many practical problems to be solved such as continuous reduction of high-quality cultivated land, land pollution and abandonment. In 2020, China has entered into the new stage of building a moderately prosperous society in an all-round way and it has established the system of ecological civilization and implemented the strategy of rural revitalization. Therefore, the protection of cultivated land and food security are facing more severe challenges.

Based on the develop trend and regional pattern of China’s urbanization, cultivated land area and grain production, this research focuses on the following three major issues: (1) the impact of a great deal of cultivated land occupation, rural migrants and food consumption growth on cultivated land protection and food security under the rapid urbanization; (2) the situation and risk of “grain center” moving to the north under the spatial pattern of cultivated land “decreasing in the South and increasing in the north”; (3) the policy innovation and scientific approaches to ensure the sustainable use of arable land and food security in China under globalization. Lastly, combined with the national “14th five year plan” and the requirements of global sustainable development goals, this research further explains the general course and guarantee system of improving the policies of urban- rural construction land increase-decrease hook, balance of cultivated land occupation and compensation, and the strategies of land consolidation project and basic farmland construction and the regional cooperation on food security in China.

Yansui Liu

Yansui Liu is the Fellow of The World Academy of Sciences (TWAS), a professor and Ph.D. supervisor in the Institute of Geographic Sciences and Natural Resources Research (IGSNRR), Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS), University of CAS ( He serves as the Director of Key Laboratory of Regional Sustainable Development Modeling, CAS; Director, Center for Assessment and Research on Targeted Poverty Alleviation, CAS; Chair of International Geographical Union (IGU) Commission on Agricultural Geography and Land Engineering (AGLE); Director of China Urban-Rural Development Think Tank Alliance; Associate Editor of Land Use Policy Journal.

Prof. Yansui Liu is a specialist of land use and human-economic geography, and his major areas of research are agricultural and rural geography, urban-rural development issues, urbanization and rural revitalization, land consolidation engineering, land-water allocation, land use policy, rural human-land system and poverty reduction. He combines the theories, methods and practical applications and leads the team going deep into grassroots villages for surveys in typical areas, and formed the scientific perception on Chinese rural development and land use problems. These scientific acknowledge has been used to guide regional development planning, policy formulations and national decision supports.

As the principal investigator, Prof. Yansui Liu has undertaken 70 research projects sponsored by NSFC, NSSFC, CAS, MLR, and the Ministry of Science and Technology, etc. He has published more than 500 scientific papers, 150 of which have appeared in SCI/SSCI journals like Nature, Science, Land Use Policy, Journal of Rural Studies, Applied Geography etc. He also has published 17 monographs and 36 commentaries and policy analyses in the country’s official newspapers, and has won more than 20 academic awards including the second prize of National Science and Technology Progress, TWAS International Science Award, provincial and ministerial first awards, etc. He and his team have submitted about 21 important advisory reports to the Central Government in recent years. He was selected as the Top 1% Scientists based on Thomson Reuters and 2018, 2019 “Global Highly Cited Researchers” from Clarivate Analytics.