• Karl Polanyi Center for Global Social Studies

Ecology as a Method: Multidisciplinary Workshop for Researchers of Food Systems

The idea of the workshop comes from the realization that, since deepening contemporary crises are complex and interrelated, the spread of more holistic approaches in doing research is essential, regardless of the field. Ecology, as the study of complex relationships has recently been rediscovered, also in Hungary, and has started to influence various research fields. The impossibility of prioritizing between solving social and environmental problems points at the need of developing integrated and innovative critical approaches to confront the deepening crises generated by unsustainable capitalist practices. The aim is, thus, to enable scholars located in Hungary to develop new tools to understand present transformations within an ecological perspective. The workshop targets academics who are open to critical approaches, and who are willing to expand their skills in disciplinary directions other than theirs. The idea is to facilitate exchange among social and natural sciences: natural scientists participating in the event might develop a social scientific understanding in their research, while social scientists might develop those aspects of their research which require skills in natural sciences. Participants will also have the possibility of working together on projects. The proposed thematic common ground is that of food systems. The workshop is open to a limited number (max. 15) of scholars, doing research in this broad topic. This approach has the capacity to integrate food systems research in natural and social sciences, cutting through various disciplines, and bring them together to develop ongoing projects or ideas, and to form new, integrated projects in an ecological perspective.

Photo: www.fao.org

Time and venue

The three-day event takes place during 3–5 September 2020 at Corvinus University of Budapest.


Prospective participants should apply with a research plan of 1000–1500 words, and provide some necessary information through this Google Form. The application deadline is 15 July 2020. Applicants are informed of the decision by 31 July.

The organizers, together with the workshop leaders select the applications. There will also be a waiting list with 5 places, in case an accepted participant would withdraw before the event.

For any inquiries, please contact Dorottya Mendly (mendlyd[at]gmail.com)

Download program here:

Ecology as a Method Program
Download PDF • 100KB

This project is kindly supported by:

Ecology as a Method: Multidisciplinary Workshop for Researchers of Food Systems

Non-Public Event

Time and venue

10 AM – 6 PM, 3–5 September 2020

4–6 Közraktár street, Budapest 1093, Corvinus University of Budapest

Download the progam here:

The Future of Food in Hungary
Download PDF • 82KB

DAY 1 – Room C. 106

10–12 AM – Lectures

Why the work of Karl Polanyi can be relevant today?

Attila Melegh, Associate Professor at Corvinus University of Budapest, Founding Director of Karl Polanyi Research Centre

Permaculture and organic farming (TBC)

Zita Szalai, Associate Professor at Szent István University, Vice-President of Hungarian Permaculture Association

12–2 PM – Lunch

2–6 PM – Workshop sessions

Developing a social pillar for ongoing research in food systems-studies

Ágnes Gagyi, Researcher at the University of Gothenburg, Co-founder of Solidarity Economy Center

Coffee Break

Developing an agroecological approach for research in food systems-studies

Dóra Drexler, Managing Director at Hungarian Research Institute of Organic Agriculture

DAY 2 – Room C. 106

10–12 AM – Lectures

Mapping local contexts with methods from anthropology

Judit Durst, Research Fellow at the Institute for Minority Studies, Hungarian Academy of Sciences Centre of Excellence

Introduction to Agroforestry

Andrea Vityi, Associate Professor at the University of Sopron

12–2 PM – Lunch

2–4 PM – Workshop session

Developing a common ground in food systems-studies

Erika Nagy, Senior Research Fellow at the Centre for Economic and Regional Studies, Hungarian Academy of Sciences Centre for Excellence

Bálint Balázs, Managing Director at the Environmental Social Science Research Group

Coffee break

4–6 PM – Workshop session (continued)

DAY 3 – Lecture room C. VIII

10–12 AM – Plenary discussion (public) and Roundtable

The Future of Food in Hungary

Lili Balogh, Agroecology and Food Sovereignty Activist at Védegylet

Logan Strenchock, Co-founder at Cargonomia, Partner at Zsámboki Biokert

Tiziana Centofanti, Visiting Professor at CEU, Researcher at the Environmental Social Science Research Group

Moderator: Dorottya Mendly, Corvinus University of Budapest, Karl Polanyi Research Center

12 AM – Coffee break

2 PM – Visiting Budapest Bike Maffia‘s Seeds4Hope project

In the framework of the project, volunteers create community gardens in homeless shelters in Budapest. Residents plant, take care of the gardens, and harvest together with the volunteers and share the produces among themselves.

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