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May 20th 2021. 10am-12pm, online seminar

  • In French and online (meeting ID: 880 1804 5612 – Password: 879029)
  • “Redefining agriculture for the Anthropocene era”

    How will we eat in the future and who will produce our food?

    This question may seem preposterous for many Westerners who have access to a huge variety of food at moderate prices. This ease of access that we have enjoyed for 50 years is under threat from a somewhat considerable event: the Anthropocene. We have entered a new geological era which is greatly destabilising agricultural activities and forcing us to fundamentally reinvent the way our food systems work, from the production of raw materials to their consumption.

    Bertrand Valiorgue’s work provides a unique analytical framework which helps us to understand why the agricultural trajectory that we are currently pursuing is entirely unsuitable for the very specific circumstances of the Anthropocene. Drawing on work from neo-institutional economics and the common goods theory, he provides avenues for reflection that question the foundations of agriculture. He demonstrates that if it is regenerative, agriculture can be one of the solutions, and not one of the problems, of the Anthropocene era. This bifurcation of our agricultural model is required for all of French society, and its need is becoming more evident every day. Otherwise, the risk of agriculture completely disappearing is anything but negligible.

B. Valiorgue (Clermont Auvergne University)

April 8th 2021 seminar

  • In English and online (meeting ID: 860 0745 1801; password: 053839)

  • “Agri-food system transformation: reflections on some recent trends”
    Recently, there is a lot of interest in agri-food system transformation, for example spurred by the 2021 UN Food Systems Summit. This agri-food system transformation has different drivers, different possible transition pathways towards future agri-food systems, of which some are still tentative while others are becoming already more visible and tangible. In this talk I will reflect on some recent work I have been involved in, touching on topics such as the influence of digitalization and other novel technologies, the idea of mission-orientation in innovation for food systems-transformation, and the role that intermediary structures can play in fostering and facilitating this transition in just and responsible ways.

Laurens Klerkx is Professor Agrifood Innovation and Transition at the Knowledge, Technology and Innovation Group of Wageningen University, The Netherlands, of which he has been part since 2002. He obtained his PhD from the same university and is an internationally recognized expert in the field of agricultural innovation studies, doing social science research on various topics such as institutional change in research and advisory organizations, roles and positions of organizations that broker multi-stakeholder networks for innovation, digital agriculture innovation, transformative innovation in agri-food and innovation system development. Throughout his career, Laurens has (co-)authored and published more than 0 articles in international peer reviewed journals. His work informs policy makers, through contributions to policy oriented publications and direct engagement through invited presentations with organizations like the World Bank, the European Commission, the Food and Agricultural Organization of the United Nations (FAO), the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), and the United Nations Commission for Trade and Development (UNCTAD).

March 4th 2021 seminar

  • “Types of agricultural methanation in the Champagne-Ardenne region: between regional and industrial dynamics”

    Agricultural methanation is following a developmental pathway linked to the issue of its integration into three distinct value chains: biomass, energy and waste treatment. This triple integration has led to a wide variety of adoption methods for the technology to produce biogas, which is creating conflict and numerous compromise solutions between the various stakeholders within the three value chains. The Champagne-Ardenne region has a wide variety of development methods for agricultural methanation, which makes it unique compared with other parts of France. After introducing the analytical framework based on upgrading – a concept resulting from the Global Value Chain approach – to study the innovation process of methanation, we propose a typology of Champagne-Ardenne plants as well as keys to understanding which explain the reasons for this diversity.

P. Grouiez (University of Paris)


January 31st 2020 seminar

  • “A comprehensive history of the bioeconomy”

    Our analysis offers a long-term reading of the transformations that agriculture has undergone, based on a triple temporal perspective: a “general economy” (Bataille) which places the history of human societies in that of nature and life, defined here as the appropriation of the flow of energy received by the earth; the socio-metabolic regimes marked by a radical break at the end of the eighteenth century when Europe – and then gradually the whole of humanity – came to depend more and more on the resources drawn from the subsoil for their energy and supply of materials; and finally the hegemonic patterns that have come and gone throughout the history of capitalism. The United Kingdom’s hegemony led to an international division of labour in which the entire world was mobilised to supply Euro-centric global biomass markets, whereas the hegemony of the United States has resulted in a radical upheaval in the role of agriculture in social metabolism. While the chemical industry reproduces synthetic products, agriculture specialises in the supply of food and, at the same time, becomes a consumer of energy and no longer a supplier, as it had always been throughout human history.

    For the past three decades, these methods for the production and use of agricultural products have been disputed. The “bioeconomic project” is part of this dispute and proposes to go the other way, replacing fossil fuels with agricultural products in the production of various synthetic items. The chemical industry therefore sees biomass as a new source of raw materials on a par with coal and petroleum, with the risk of seeing the same mining approach transposed there.

G. Allaire (INRAE) and B. Daviron (CIRAD) – joint seminar between the Chair in Industrial Bioeconomy and URCA’s REGARDS Laboratory


January 22nd 2019 seminar

  • Taking a broad view of development. Proposing a conceptual and methodological framework for development from the case of synthetic biology

Benjamin Raimbault, Cermes3

February 15th 2019 seminar

  • Innovation and territory

Didier Chabaud, IAE Paris – Sorbonne Business School

March 13th 2019 seminar

  • The economic analysis of ecosystem services

Harold Levrel, Agro Paris Tech

June 14th 2019 seminar

  • Productivity or transformation towards sustainability

Andreas Pyka, Université d’Hohenheim, head of the Chair for Innovation Economics


June 8th 2018 seminar

  • What impact do agricultural cooperatives have? An economic, social and environmental assessment

Damien Rousselière (Université d’Angers, Agrocampus Ouest)

March 23rd 2018 seminar

  • A system perspective on the role of pilot and demonstration plants in the transition to a bioeconomy: a synthesis and implications for future research

Hans Hellsmark (Chalmers University)

January 19th 2018 seminar

  • Biorefineries Models and Policy

James Philp (OECD)

November 15th 2017 seminar

  • Decision-making support in the upstream stages of a biorefinery project supported by multi-objective optimisation.
  • Integration of sustainability dimensions for the development of bio-sourced sectors at a regional level: scenario modelling based on system dynamics.

Mauricio Camargo, University Professor, Director of International Action, ENSGSI (National School of Industrial Systems Engineering, Nancy), ERPI Laboratory (Research Team on Innovation Processes)

  • “Living lab” approaches: the example of the LF2L platform (http://www.lf2l.fr/) as a player in regional development.

Laure Morel, University Professor, ENSGI, Director of the ERPI Laboratory

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