UBC Undergraduate Research

Sustainability research proposal for the UBC Food System Chan, Lorna; Francescutti, Lisa; Kan, Jenny; Luk, Lester; Omidvar, Vahid; Thandi, Fulroop; Yap, Melissa


This report proposes a model to assess the state of UBC’s food system sustainability on a continuum ranging from “unsustainable” to “sustainable.” Sustainability is defined as a value-based, adaptable approach concerned with the interconnections between food, health and agriculture involving social, economical and ecological issues (1, 8). Our proposal is based on a weak anthropocentric and communitybased value perspective. After analyzing the current goals of the UBC Sustainability Office, and examining the components of the food system based on our values, we have developed measurable social, ecological and economical indicators to evaluate the sustainability of the UBC Food System (UBCFS). The indicators of sustainability will assist in locating the UBCFS in our proposed sustainability model. The social, ecological and economical indicators are ‘community support of local agriculture production,’ ‘waste management and recycling’ and ‘profit and losses,’ respectively. We have designed a research proposal that outlines the ways that the sustainability of the UBCFS can be evaluated based upon these indicators. We have also included recommendations and alternative research ideas for future projects regarding sustainability of the UBCFS. Disclaimer: “UBC SEEDS provides students with the opportunity to share the findings of their studies, as well as their opinions, conclusions and recommendations with the UBC community. The reader should bear in mind that this is a student project/report and is not an official document of UBC. Furthermore readers should bear in mind that these reports may not reflect the current status of activities at UBC. We urge you to contact the research persons mentioned in a report or the SEEDS Coordinator about the current status of the subject matter of a project/report.”

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