Agriculturalization as a syndrome: a comparative study of agriculture in Argentina and Australia
The following is an extension of research in the Division of Sustainable Development and Human Settlements on sustainable development and policy in Latin America and the Caribbean. The syndrome approach to global environmental change proposed by the German Advisory Council on Global Change was previously adapted for the examination of sustainable development in the region, and a potential regional syndrome of agriculturalization in the Argentinean Pampas was proposed and explored by regional experts from an array of disciplines. The syndrome approach is meant to facilitate a transdisciplinary analysis of socio-ecological trends and the identification of patterns of sustainability of development. In order for a causal complex, such as agriculturalization, to be considered a syndrome, it must occur in multiple locations. Thus, the current study compares the process of agriculturalization as it has been described for Argentina to similar processes occurring in Australia in order to assess the utility of this causal complex as a syndrome of sustainability of development and to elucidate some of the complex socio-ecological processes and interactions that occur in agriculture in different regions of the world. A brief examination of the Australian case shows potential for the occurrence of the agriculturalization syndrome in that region and several differences between the two cases illustrate the importance of government policies in the socio-ecological processes of agriculture. In addition, positive aspects of sustainability in Argentinean and Australian agriculture are discussed.