Interpretation of results from on-farm experiments: manure-nitrogen recovery on grassland as affected by manure quality and application technique. 2. A sociological analysis

  • Jan Douwe Van Der Ploeg JDVDP
  • Jeroen C.J. Groot JCJG
  • Frank P.M. Verhoeven FMP
  • Egbert A. Lantinga EAL
Keywords: dairy farming system, nutrient use efficiency, socio-technical regime, novelty

Abstract

This article discusses the outcomes of a re-analysis of a grassland experiment, by locating it within the wider institutional context composed of well-established routines used in agronomic research and the dominant epistemological tradition of agricultural sciences. It is argued that both, research routines and epistemological tradition, are strategic pillars of the reigning socio-technical regime. They contribute to path-dependency, thus reinforcing the uni-lateral development tendency centring on technological solutions that fit within the dominating regime. An important, albeit probably unintended consequence is that promising novelties are obscured within and through research, thus blocking a potentially highly effective road towards sustainability.

Author Biographies

Jan Douwe Van Der Ploeg, JDVDP
Rural Sociology Group Wageningen University P.O. Box 8130 NL-6700 EW Wageningen The Netherlands
Jeroen C.J. Groot, JCJG
Biological Farming Systems Group Wageningen Universit Wageningen The Netherlands
Frank P.M. Verhoeven, FMP
Rural Sociology Group Wageningen University P.O. Box 8130 NL-6700 EW Wageningen The Netherlands
Egbert A. Lantinga, EAL
Rural Sociology Group Wageningen University P.O. Box 8130 NL-6700 EW Wageningen The Netherlands
Published
2007-02-21
Section
Papers