Julie HERMESSE


 Université catholique de Louvain (UCL)

After an undergraduate degree (licence) in sociology, my interests subsequently led me to anthropology. In the context of my doctorate (defended in May 2011, UCL), I carried out long-term ethnographic research in rural environments of Guatemala. That country’s profoundly inequitable land system leads to agricultural intensification practices to increase outputs that are carried out by external input. In such a context, the struggle for short-term food security prevails over questions of environmental conservation and reducing externalities linked to food production. This study alerted me to the urgency of agricultural transition.

I am currently an FNRS postdoctoral researcher in UCL’s Laboratoire d’anthropologie prospective (Prospective Anthropology Laboratory). My field work in Cuba led me to analyze agricultural practices (including agroecology) that are alternatives to systems described as conventional, as well as the social, economic and political context permitting their development.Questions dealing with the resilience of agrarian systems to hydrometeorological phenomena in the context of climatic emergencies are at the heart of my research concerns and also what led me to the Philippines today. My main interest is in studying original forms of resilience put in place by indigenous populations, described as “vulnerable”, and based on detailed knowledge of their ecological environment. In parallel, I am interested in analyzing the construction and transmission of practical know-how in urban and semi-urban agriculture (Brussels).

 

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