Robinson, ZP and Laycock, R (2018) Reviewing University Community Gardens for Sustainability: Taking stock, comparisons with urban community gardens, and mapping research opportunities. Local Environment, 23 (6). ISSN 1354-9839

[thumbnail of Reviewing University Community Gardens for Sustainability_submitted.docx] Text
Reviewing University Community Gardens for Sustainability_submitted.docx - Accepted Version
Available under License Creative Commons Attribution Non-commercial.

Download (88kB)


Community gardens (CGs) in university settings are faced with challenges associated with a transient and inexperienced population of student gardeners, but they also have the potential to have a lasting impact on the food behaviours of many young people. This paper undertakes a systematic critical review of literature about University Community Gardens for Sustainability (UCGS) in order to suggest directions of future research in the emerging field research about CGs within and outside of universities. The literature shows that UCGS have similar benefits to those identified in urban CG literature; but with greater emphasis on both the educational and environmental sustainability benefits, suggesting an under-used potential of CGs in these areas. We argue that a better understanding of the particular challenges and benefits of UCGS could improve outcomes of CGs in all settings. Therefore we recommend that future should explore: (1) participant transience in CGs, thereby helping sustainability projects with large volunteer bases learn to cope with challenges this poses in order to maximise the garden’s impacts; (2) whether/how participating in CGs can contribute to changes in attitudes/behaviours with regards to sustainability and be used as a tool for Education for Sustainability in and outside of university settings and (3) failed cases of CGs to genuinely understand factors that contribute to success. By addressing these areas we can improve our understanding of how community gardening can contribute to our communities, universities and environment, and can begin to make these potential contributions a reality.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: This is the accepted author manuscript (AAM). The final published version (version of record) is available online via Taylor & Francis at - please refer to any applicable terms of use of the publisher.
Uncontrolled Keywords: education for sustainability, failure, higher education, transience, volunteers, urban agriculture
Subjects: G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > GB Physical geography
Divisions: Faculty of Natural Sciences > School of Geography, Geology and the Environment
Depositing User: Symplectic
Date Deposited: 29 Mar 2017 09:03
Last Modified: 17 Apr 2019 01:30

Actions (login required)

View Item
View Item