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Mellan trivsel och ensamhet

om sociala villkor i lantbruket

Nordström Källström, Helena (2008). Mellan trivsel och ensamhet. Diss. (sammanfattning/summary) Uppsala : Sveriges lantbruksuniv., Acta Universitatis Agriculturae Sueciae, 1652-6880 ; 2008:74
ISBN 978-91-86195-07-6
[Doctoral thesis]

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This is a story about farmers in sparsely populated regions of Sweden. For farmers, conditions have changed during the past decades. Swedish agriculture has declined and farms are getting bigger and fewer. This is effecting the social situations at farms. For example farmers' networks of colleagues are getting thinner and the traditional family farm has in many cases been changed to one-man farms. The aim of this thesis is to show how farmers perceive their social situations and. based on their stories about their social situations I will discuss farmers' social life from a perspective of socially sustainable development. My focus is the life worlds of Swedish farmers and their social relations. The thesis is based on 30 interviews conducted in sparsely populated areas of Sweden. Two municipalities in the north of Sweden and one parish in the south of Sweden were chosen, both in boreal areas. The interviewees were chosen with respect to variety in age, sex and agricultural production. During the interviews, which aimed to cover most of the farmers' social contexts, different themes were discussed. These themes were; farmers identity, place, the family farm and other social relations, generation changeover, working environment, financial viability, agricultural policy and the market as well as public service on the countryside. These themes were synthesized with a connotation to both the emic and ethic concept quality of life. The relationship of quality of life and socially sustainable development of Swedish agriculture was also discussed. To synthesize, the themes above can be categorized into two problem areas: 1) Farmers sense that they have too little influence on decisions that affect their farm business e.g. they feel exposed to decisions and policies from the "society" at large and 2) Farmers perceive an impoverished social situation with fewer contacts with other farmers and also with the consumers of their produce e.g. farmers experience loneliness. These problems can result in farmers retiring from farming and sometimes also leaving the countryside, but it is also in one way or another incorporated in their identities as farmers. Therefore, I focus on the experienced loneliness and vulnerability by these farmers and on the possible effect on social conditions in farming. Loneliness and vulnerability can be regarded lying at heart of social sustainability in sparsely populated areas in Sweden.

Authors/Creators:Nordström Källström, Helena
Title:Mellan trivsel och ensamhet
Subtitle:om sociala villkor i lantbruket
Series Name/Journal:Acta Universitatis Agriculturae Sueciae
Year of publishing :2008
Number of Pages:157
ALLNordström Källström, H. och M. Ljung (2005). Social sustainability and collaborative learning. Ambio, vol. 34 (issue 4-5), p 373-379. Nordström Källström, H. och M. Ljung. Recognizing the farmer – Strengthening farmers' place in society (manuscript). Nordström Källström, H. och A-K. Ekman. Farm, family and friendship – Conflicting norms and local reality in North Swedish agriculture (submitted).
Place of Publication:Uppsala
ISBN for printed version:978-91-86195-07-6
Publication Type:Doctoral thesis
Full Text Status:Public
Agrovoc terms:farmers, social conditions, social change, quality of life, psychological factors, sociocultural environment, social participation, sustainability, rural areas, less favoured areas, agricultural policies, sweden
Keywords:social conditions, social sustainability, socially sustainable development, farmers, vulnerability, exposure, quality of life, loneliness, social relations, family formation
Permanent URL:
ID Code:1841
Department:(NL, NJ) > Dept. of Urban and Rural Development
(LTJ, LTV) > Dept. of Urban and Rural Development
Deposited By: Helena Nordström Källström
Deposited On:13 Oct 2008 00:00
Metadata Last Modified:02 Dec 2014 10:14

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