Social perception of urban agriculture in Latin-America. A case study in Mexican social housing

Ana Nadal, Ileana Cerón-Palma, Carmen García-Gómez, María Pérez-Sánchez, Beatriz Rodríguez-Labajos, Eva Cuerva, Alejandro Josa, Joan Rieradevall

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

29 Citations (Scopus)


© 2018 Elsevier Ltd Food security is at the heart of governmental agendas of developing countries. In Latin America, urban agriculture (UA) offers an interesting alternative to ensuring a sufficient, safe and nutritious food supply for urban populations. However, Latin American cities have been subject to radical transformations in the last decades, most apparently through the expansion of social housing. The main objective of this research is to analyze the social perceptions and feasibility of UA in Mexican social housing neighborhoods. The Mérida city was used as a representative case study. Structured interviews were given to 65 key stakeholders across different categories (residents, urban government officials and technical experts). The results indicate a nonexistent perception of UA in Mérida, despite the secular agricultural tradition of the Yucatan region. Nevertheless, respondents agreed in their interest in potentially developing UA activities to improve diets, increase green areas, support local economies, and reduce CO2 emissions. The main perceived barriers for UA are the prevalent model of housing, with a very limited floor area, and the current approach to urban planning, which lacks non-built-up areas. Significantly, large artificialized zones create suitable areas to implement UA on extended rooftops. Finally, stakeholders demand the intervention of authorities at different levels (Federal [national], State [regional] and local) as a requirement to develop UA properly. The main pathways for this support should be to prepare new urban and housing policies and introduce economic incentives.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)719-734
JournalLand Use Policy
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jul 2018


  • Food security
  • Green rooftop
  • Mérida
  • Stakeholders survey
  • Urban planning
  • Yucatán


Dive into the research topics of 'Social perception of urban agriculture in Latin-America. A case study in Mexican social housing'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this