For the InstructorThese student materials complement the Future of Food Instructor Materials. If you would like your students to have access to the student materials, we suggest you either point them at the Student Version which omits the framing pages with information designed for faculty (and this box). Or you can download these pages in several formats that you can include in your course website or local Learning Managment System. Learn more about using, modifying, and sharing InTeGrate teaching materials.
Diagramming a food system and food supply chains as a coupled natural-human system framework
Choose one farming and food system example of the following and download the information package related to that example. The three choices are:
- A food system example including dairy, vegetable, and other crop production in Pennsylvania, USA.
- A food system in a densely populated, high rainfall area of Wolayta, Ethiopia.
- A highland food system in the Andes of Peru.
- An irrigated food and forage production system in arid Southern Colorado, USA
The information package contains the following:
- Images of the system in a slideshow.
- A google earth screen capture in the slideshow that you can use to better understand the system. You can visit the region in google earth on your own for more details.
- Text descriptions of food production practices, history, and natural system characteristics of the food system example, along with policies and other human system factors. You can also draw on other online and printed sources of information to complete this activity.
Files to Download
Download the worksheet first and consider which region you want to focus on: download worksheet here (Microsoft Word 2007 (.docx) 334kB Jan3 18).
Ethiopia information package (Zip Archive 7.5MB Jan3 18)
Pennsylvania information package (Zip Archive 7.7MB Jan3 18)
Peru information package (Zip Archive 9.3MB Jan3 18)
Colorado information package (Zip Archive 2.8MB Jan3 18)
Download the worksheet first, to decide which region you want to focus on. When you fill in the worksheet be sure to check the rubric below which gives standards for success on this assignment. The diagram below is presented for reference and is also in the worksheet, regarding the development of the food system as a coupled natural human system. As you do this assessment you'll be thinking about the multiple human and natural influences that combine to determine the development of a food system, thus practicing the geosciences "habit of mind" of systems thinking, since you'll need to incorporate multiple influences of different types.
Image credit: National Science Foundation
Grading Information and Rubric
This assignment is worth a total of 34 points as described in the rubric below:
|Clearly and correctly identifies types of initial natural conditions, human system responses, and environmental feedbacks.||8|
|Identification and brief description of one dominant type of food system and one secondary type of food system in the food system example||8|
|Food supply chain responses demonstrate an understanding of the system based on the description given.||5|
|Analysis of whether poverty traps or concerns about "agriculture of the middle" are part of this system, and brief reasoning why.||5|
|Food system organization focusing on the future and sustainability: Organization clearly identified, what way it is addressing food system concerns, and how it is responding to food systems concerns in 4-5 sentences.||8|