The proposed study will investigate political, demographic, and socio-economic drivers that impact on the urban agricultural system in the Philippi Horticultural Area (PHA) – located in the Cape Flats District on the south-eastern side of central Cape Town . The research will apply a food systems approach to interrogate opportunities at the institutional and governance levels to increase food production, job creation, and poverty alleviation in the PHA, in the context of current land use contestations threatening to reduce agricultural land in the area.
The research will employ a mixed-methods approach, using both qualitative and quantitative methods. A stakeholder mapping exercise and stakeholder analysis will be undertaken to determine stakeholders’ relative importance in relation to the research aims and objectives. Thereafter, primary data will be obtained from a purposive sample of 30 farmers, 6 focus group sessions, and 20 key informant interviews; this will be supplemented by secondary data from existing sources. The technique of triangulation will be applied to the findings to help ensure valid, reliable, and comprehensive answers to the research questions.
The research will be of benefit to the research community, various stakeholders in the PHA, and government by providing insight through a food systems lens into the PHA agricultural system and the contestation that is playing out. The study results can be applied to rethink developmental approaches to urban food production and food security. In addition, policy implications include opportunities to rethink policy and approach policymaking in a more multidimensional and systemic fashion.