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Resources for Researchers is a database intended as a source for researchers, policymakers, students, and the public to become better informed of major recent analysis on global food security. Included are different perspectives provided through a range of academic journals, government research, think tanks, popular press and opinion pieces, and scholarly reviews. This information has been collected from open sources and includes works that have been produced within the last decade. We have noted gated articles. We will regularly update the database as new works are published. Other topics will be added in the future. This is a collaborative project. If you think we’ve missed a major piece of work, please let us know.



Agroforestry is the integration of trees and shrubs into crop and animal farming systems to create environmental, economic, and social benefits. Agroforestry techniques have been used all over the world for centuries. Agroforestry methods can improve the management of natural resources and soil quality, increase farmers’ land yields and incomes, protect against deforestation, and provide resilience against climate change.

Explore the different Agroforestry categories below:

Agroforestry’s Importance to Food Production and Diets


Gender and Agroforestry

Genetic Diversity Databases and Agroforestry Techniques

Agroforestry and Climate Change

Projects and Organizations to Follow

Agroforestry’s Importance to Food Security and Nutrition

The State of the World’s Forest Genetic Resources

Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations; 2013

Based upon information provided by 86 countries, FAO has developed this first ever report on forests and the importance of their genetic diversity in supporting resilience and food security. 

The Contribution of Forests and Trees to Sustainable Diets

Barbara Vinceti, Celine Termote, Amy Ickowitz, Bronwen Powell, Katja Kehlenbeck, and Danny Hunter; Sustainability; 2013

This paper examines the contributions of forests and trees to the need for nutritious and adequate foods. It also identifies research gaps and provides recommendations to enhance the contribution of forests and trees. 

Agroforestry is Crucial for the Food Production Challenge

Patrick Worms; EurActiv.com; April 2014

With the release of the IPCC’s climate change impact report, author Worms argues adding the right trees makes the fields where they grow more resilient to extreme weather and farmers less dependent on a single crop. 

Dietary Quality and Tree Cover in Africa

Amy Ickowitz, Bronwen Powell, Mohammad A. Salim, and Terry C.H. Sunderland; Global Environmental Change; January 2014

This statistical study found a positive linear relationship between tree cover and quality of African children’s diets. 

Agroforestry Can be a Long-Term Solution to Closing Africa’s Food Gap

Kate Langford; World Agroforestry Centre; January 2014

Agroforestry practices have many benefits, such as improving soil quality, restoring soil nutrients, and reducing reliance on fertilizer use. The article provides examples of how integrating trees into farms can diversify agricultural systems for farmers. 

Trees and Food Security in Africa; What’s the Link?

Daisy Ouya; World Agroforestry Centre; July 2013

Agroforestry can provide a golden opportunity to improve nutrition in Sub-Saharan Africa in addition to high yielding crops and improved soils.

Trees for Food and Nutrition

Bioversity International

Trees can enhance nutrition and food security along with agricultural crops. They also can be more resilient to climate change than crops.

Agroforestry, Food and Nutritional Security
Ramni Jamnadass, et al; World Agroforestry Centre; 2013                        

This working paper provides a comprehensive overview of how agroforestry practices can benefit farmers and food security alike, whether by providing the former with supplementary income through the sale of tree products and surplus materials, or by supporting ecosystem processes (such as pollination) that aid in perpetuating the food production process.


World Congress on Agroforestry: A Springboard to Accelerate the Impacts of Agroforestry

Sarah Small; Food Tank; February 2014

The authors describe the role of forests and forest foods in sustainably contributing to the needs of future populations, estimated to reach 9 billion by 2050. 

Agroforestry in India: New National Policy Sets the Bar High

Daniel Kapsoot; The Guardian; February 2014

India is the only country that is currently implementing a national policy on agroforestry. They hope to increase tree coverage by 33%. 

Agroforestry: Effective, and Popular, in Integrated Landscapes

Eleanor Greene; Food Tank; February 2014

Recent studies and reviews demonstrate that tree-based approaches can have multiple benefits on farmlands. 

SDG Focus Area Document Released - With Great Opportunities for Forestry

Peter Holmgren; Forest News; February 2014

The author suggests how forestry can be integrated into United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals. 

Agroforestry:  USDA Reports to America, Fiscal Years 2011-2012 - In-Brief

U.S. Department of Agriculture; October 2013

This USDA report on agroforestry and the important role it plays in creating more sustainable land use is the first of its kind conducted by the department. 

Businesses and Agroforestry: The Role of Public-Private Partnerships

Ekaterina Bessonova; Swedish International Agricultural Network Initiative (SIANI); February 2014

What role can the public-private partnerships play to build successful agroforestry systems?

Advancing Agroforestry on the Policy Agenda

Gérard Buttoud; Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations; 2013

Invoking multiple case studies alongside contributions from experts working in the field, this guide explores the contribution of public policy to effective agroforestry practices, and discusses the various local conditions whereby these policies either succeed or fail.

Trees Breathing New Life into French Agriculture

Tiphaine Honore; The Guardian; August 2012

The traditional practice of growing crops around trees is gaining popularity in France. 

Facilitating Agroforestry Development through Land and Tree Tenure Reforms

Marcus Colchester, et al; World Agroforestry Centre; 2005

This impact study explores the World Agroforestry Centre’s efforts to overhaul Indonesian land and forest tenure laws, and illustrates the dilemma of reconciling customary tenure practices on the ground with the jurisdictional prerogative of state agencies over land and resource management matters. 

Gender and Agroforestry

Trees, Women, and Men: Surprises and New Questions

Rob Finlayson; World Agroforestry Centre; March 2014

In this study that examined the gender role in agroforestry, preliminary results found that women have less direct association with forests and care more about crop production, while men produced more yield from tree-based systems in Indonesia. 

Native Fruit Trees of Life

Narasimha Hedge; Bioversity International; March 2014

Research in India demonstrates the importance of domestication and conservation of trees, and the gender roles in agroforestry.

Gender in the CGIAR Research Program on Forests, Trees and Agroforestry

Center for International Forestry Research (CIFOR); 2013

This strategy focuses on management structures and processes to improve the quality and volume of gender research and outcomes, specifically for forestry and agroforestry. 

Gender and agroforestry in Africa: a review of women's participation

Evelyne Kiptot; Steven Franzel; Agroforestry Systems; 2012

This study illustrates that socio-economic and cultural issues hinder female participation in agroforestry, in Africa. 

Gender and Agroforestry in Africa: Are Women Participating?

Evelyn Kiptot and Steven Franzel; World Agroforestry Centre; 2011

Kiptot and Franzel draw on 104 individual case studies to explore the social and cultural factors that negatively affect female participation in agroforestry activities in Sub-Saharan and Eastern Africa and suggest ways in which policy, institutional, and technological interventions might translate into an equal role for female stakeholders.

Agroforestry Techniques and Genetic Diversity Databases 

Agroforestry: Tree Domestication

World Agroforestry Centre; 2012

This primer discusses important agroforestry tree domestication issues for researchers to use. 

 The State of the World’s Forest Genetic Resources

Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO); June 2012

The Commission on Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture (CGRFA) has developed a State of the World’s Forest Genetic Resources report that would prepare a country-driven approach on forest genetic resources. 

Agroforestree Database

World Agroforestry Centre

This database provides detailed information on the management, use, and ecology of a range of tree species that can be used for agroforestry. 

Agroforestry and Climate Change

Community-based Agroforestry Practices for Watershed Management in the Philippine Uplands

Agustin Mercado, Jr. and Patricia J. Sanchez; World Agroforestry Centre; 2014

A new study shows that locally managed agroforestry systems in the Philippines have contributed to more sustainable watershed practices as well as higher crop yields, increase incomes, and greater resilience to climate change. 

City Regions as Landscapes for People, Food, and Nature

Thomas Forster and Arthur Getz Escudero; Landscapes for People, Food, and Nature; 2014

Rural areas are not the only places that can benefit from agroforestry. This paper provides some examples of urban agroforestry. 

Carbon Sequestration Potential of Agroforestry Systems in India

Indu K. Murthy, et al; Journal of Earth Science & Climatic Change; 2013

Building from previous studies into the carbon-offset potential of domestic agroforestry systems, this paper outlines how the use of agroforestry and silvipastoral techniques on the Indian subcontinent has coupled climatic adaptation with crafted mitigation strategies to create a practical, proactive approach for staving off the local effects of climate change.

Climate-Smart Landscapes: Opportunities and Challenges for Integrating Adaptation and Mitigation in Tropical Agriculture 

Celia A. Harvey et al; Conservation Letters; October 2013

This paper demonstrates mitigation and adaptation benefits can be managed appropriately in tropical agriculture, including agroforestry. 

Traveling by Bus, Car, Boat and Elephant in Indonesia

Robin Mearns; Development in a Changing Climate - World Bank Blog; May 2012

On a trip to Indonesia, Mearns saw an agroforestry-based voluntary carbon scheme on coffee plantations. Launched by the World Agroforestry Centre, the project helps restart the coffee production while protecting the nearby watershed. 

From Climate-Smart Agriculture to Climate-Smart Landscapes

Sara J. Scherr, Seth Shames, and Rachel Friedman; Agriculture and Food Security; August 2012

For agricultural systems to achieve climate-smart objectives, they must become “climate-smart landscapes.” The authors in this paper examine what is needed to achieve landscape initiatives and what climate-smart practices are important. 

Adaptation to Climate Change through Sustainable Management and Development of Agroforestry Systems 
K.P.C. Rao, et al; International Food Policy Research Institute; December 2007 

Rao and his associates make a case for increased agroforestry ‘interventions’ as a means of adapting to global climate change, and discuss several strategies by which agroforestry techniques can reduce carbon emissions, induce positive microclimatic changes, and improve the quality of life through provision of shade and shelter. 

Projects and Organizations to Follow

CGIAR Research Program on Forests, Trees, and Agroforestry

The Consultative Group on International Agriculture Research (CGIAR)

CGIAR’s program aims to enhance the management and use of forests through five areas, including smallholder production systems and markets and climate change adaption. 

Conservation and Use of Forest and Tree Genetic Diversity

Bioversity International

Bioversity’s forest research documents the diversity of tree species that are important to people’s livelihoods and health. Take a look at where they work and highlights of their project.

Agroforestry Village Project

Farming First; September 2013

TechnoServe is working to change land-use patterns from slash and burn farming to more sustainable plantation forests. It is an integrated approach to create socio-economic benefits, such as jobs, expanded markets, and improved farming practices and facilities.