For Systemic Approaches to Permaculture: Results and Opportunities for Thinking About Sustainable Development

  • Gaëtan Bourmaud
Conference paper
Part of the Advances in Intelligent Systems and Computing book series (AISC, volume 825)


Permaculture seeks to organise and facilitate appropriate interactions between ecosystem components. In the wake of previous research on a different work situation, we aimed to identify the resource systems that people use in context. Drawing on the analysis of one permaculture farmer’s activity, we discuss his/her practices from a twofold systemic angle, in terms of (1) the systemic principles of permaculture: to each plant’s primary or intrinsic functions, must be added those of its contribution to the overall farming system, positive or otherwise; crop beds themselves forming systems, just as much as sub-systems in the growing zone as a whole, etc.; (2) resource systems proper to the permaculture farmer: material (diverse tools) and immaterial (knowledge) artefacts; criteria and values (workload generated by a cultivation sequence, plans to sell to the general public, or induced consumption of water, etc.); etc. This study could also form the basis for broader research that goes beyond permaculture. It aims to suggest methods of analysing criteria and value systems that relate to sustainable development, guiding the way people mobilise resources.


Sustainable development Systemic approach Permaculture 


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© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Université Paris 8, Paragraphe (EA 349)Saint-DenisFrance
  2. 2.AXErgonomieGrisy-les-PlâtresFrance

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