Urban Agriculture Ethography Project


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The Mississippi Watershed Management Organization seeks to understand why and how residents within their watershed engage in urban agriculture, including motivations, barriers, and benefits, in order to more effectively engage other residents in urban agriculture. MWMO’s overarching goal is to improve water quality by reducing the volume and speed of stormwater runoff. Urban agricultural practices may reduce the volume and speed of stormwater runoff by changing compacted soils that cannot infilitrate water to healthier soils that can absorb stormwater.

Students will investigate engagement in urban agriculture through ethnographic research with residents of North Minneapolis. Based on this research, students will create narratives of residents’ stories of engagement with urban agriculture. In the process of writing these ethnographies, students will explore themes about motivations for and meanings of engaging in urban agriculture as well as barriers residents experience. This study will provide rich, qualitative data upon which a further study examining motivations to engage in urban agriculture can be developed and messages to encourage residents’ engagement in urban agriculture can be built.

Read the final student report delivered to the local gov/community partner.

Sustainable Communities Partnership Contact Info

University Faculty Contact
Todd Lawrence


Local Government / Community Contact
Michele Ross

Program Specialist

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