Engaging diverse communities in reimagining agriculture.
At Grassland 2.0, we are dedicated to finding pathways toward a regenerative agriculture that delivers stable profits for farmers, rural community vitality and protection of the ecosystem on which we all depend. So, where do we start? While keeping big-picture issues like national farm policy and global markets in mind, we recognize that change happens one farm at a time and that social dimensions can be drivers for making change happen. Together, we are working to engage local communities in conversations about their visions for sustainable food and farming systems and how we get there.
One way we are engaging local communities is through our Learning Hubs – place-based focal points of activity that support two-way communication and co-learning between the Grassland 2.0 team and the local region and people. We are looking to support and learn from community efforts and assist in identifying effective strategies for creating change in their local landscape, farming, and food system. Collectively, we will go through a collaborative landscape design process that identifies what is possible and explores barriers and opportunities that influence the capacity for change. One outcome of the process will be a local plan the community can use to guide their progress toward a shared future.
The Grassland 2.0 team is in the process of identifying communities who are interested in collaborating. We anticipate having two Learning Hubs in Wisconsin and three in other locations throughout the North Central Region.
Locally driven Learning Hubs
Learning Hubs will be hosted by local organizations or individuals and engage existing leaders and social networks to encourage continued co-learning beyond the lifespan of the project. Each Learning Hub will include people and organizations who are interested and engaged in the kind of systems change the local community and project agree to explore and advance. The Grassland 2.0 team will support each group’s efforts.
Learning Hub activities
Learning Hubs will be the focus of activities for Grassland 2.0. Specific activities will depend on the agricultural transformation needs of each Learning Hub and will be developed in collaboration with the Learning Hub participants. Potential activities include:
- Using decision-support tools and models to build a picture of the future landscape
- Identifying supply chain needs to build markets for grass-fed products
- Developing policy recommendations to support perennial agriculture
- Identifying carbon market potential
- Helping farmers consider transitioning to grass-based agriculture
- Holding field days to showcase grazing systems
- Researching the financial aspects of grass-based agriculture
- Raising public awareness of perennial agriculture through the arts
- Sharing your stories of successful farmers practicing perennial agriculture
The primary product of the Learning Hubs will be the development of a plan that identifies the long-term needs and pathways to develop perennial agriculture in the region. The plan will be developed in collaboration between the local Learning Hub and the Grassland 2.0 team.
You don’t have to be a Learning Hub to be involved! Some of the activities listed above can be supported across the region by the Grassland 2.0 team.
You can also share your ideas for the future of agriculture. We will compile your ideas and feedback to help build and improve the Grassland 2.0 movement.