Urban Agriculture for Poverty Alleviation:A Case Study of Hyderabad, India
Conceptualising sustainable development as that which seeks to achieve holistic well-being means that as a barrier to attaining and sustaining well-being, poverty takes on a similarly more broad definition. Within this framework it is proposed that the breakdown of community; the extinction of experience; degradation of the natural environment; and food insecurity are examples of poverty in the contemporary urban setting because they obstruct access to overall well-being. Through a case study of the Resource Centres for Urban Agriculture and Food Security - Cities Farming for the Future (RUAF-CFF) project being piloted in Surabhi Colony, Hyderabad, India, urban agriculture is assessed as a means of alleviating these diverse forms of poverty. While the findings indicate some success at the project level, urban agriculture's limited ability to address Hyderabad's more widespread and pressing problems - in particular its water scarcity - coupled with the form of development the city is taking means that it is unlikely urban agriculture will gain the institutional support necessary for its further spread throughout the city. Although such findings do not inspire hope for the future use of urban agriculture as a poverty alleviation strategy within Hyderabad, a number of issues are considered which suggest that urban agriculture should rather be supported for its ability to facilitate 'good change' in our urban centres.