SPRU - Science Policy Research Unit

An Integrated Analysis Of Scale Effects In Alternative Agricultural Systems (SCALE)

Welcome to the SCALE project.

The aim of this study was to investigate the scale effects of alternative methods of agricultural cultivation, and of the factors that drive their adoption. In particular, this project addressed two key questions: 

  1. What causes organic farms to be arranged in clusters at local, regional and national scales, rather than be spread more evenly throughout the landscape?
  2. Assess how the ecological, hydrological, socio-economic and cultural impacts of organic farming vary due to neighbourhood effects at a variety of scales.  

These questions were investigated by undertaking an integrated assessment of scale effects by studying matched sets of farms situated in landscapes with high and low concentrations of organic farming.

The project was completed on 30 June 2010.