Research


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Research project (§ 26 & § 27)
Duration : 2018-01-01 - 2019-06-30

Objectives: - to assess barn climatic conditions/indoor air quality in dairy farms in Kosovo and Macedonia and to assess in parallel the welfare of the dairy cattle both during the summer and the winter period. - to establish associations between the barn climatic parameters and the welfare outcome measures as obtained from an acknowledged on-farm assessment protocol. - to disseminate the acquired knowledge to the scientific community as well as to different stakeholders. - to strengthen the research capacities of animal welfare research institutions in Kosovo and Macedonia through international cooperation, know-how exchange and implementation of state-of-the-art scientific methods Project activities: - Establishment of protocols for assessment if barn climatic conditions in small-scale dairy farms - Training in on-farm welfare assessment using the Welfare Quality protocol - Repeated on-farm data collection in 8 farms in Kosovo and Macedonia each (3x during summer, 3x during winter) - Analysis of associations between barn climatic conditions and animal-based welfare outcome measures - Publication of findings in scientific journal - Dissemination of findings to stakeholders (i.e. farmers, advisors, veterinarians)
Research project (§ 26 & § 27)
Duration : 2018-01-01 - 2021-07-31

This research develops scenarios to improve the ecological quality of Urban Agro-Food Systems (UAFS). These scenarios serve as an experimenting and learning tool to initiate a societal discourse on UAFS and to delineate transition pathways for more sustainable UAFS. The scenarios are built around the three sub-systems farming, food processing/transportation and food consumption. Guiding scenarios are: I. Business as usual scenario: current average Austrian diet pattern (91 kg/cap/yr meat; 30y% animal products in caloric intake); global supply. II. Organic / Conventional current diet scenario: 100% organic / 100% conventional food consumption and current diet pattern III. Organic / Conventional low meat diet scenario: 100% organic / conventional farming; 20kg/cap/yr meat consumption The scenarios II and III will be calculated for two spatial variants (food production closest to consumers and food production according to comparative locational advantages). An interdisciplinary model of the UAFS will be designed to calculate and assess the ecological and economic impacts of the different scenarios. The scenario and model development will be accompanied by a transdisciplinary research process, in which the different scenarios and their consequences will be studied and assessed together with relevant stakeholder groups. Transdisciplinary methods will also be used to design transition pathways for each scenario.
Research project (§ 26 & § 27)
Duration : 2017-09-01 - 2020-03-31

Social sustainable integration of disabled people (with rehabilitative social needs) in the working process of horticultural farms The objectives of the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities as well as of the Austrian Action Plan 2012 (for implementation of an inclusive society) are the full and effective participation of disabled people in society. This project will provide scientific evidence, which will contribute to the integration of disabled people in the working society. The overall goal of the project is to provide all necessary information for a successful cooperation between day-care centers for disabled persons and private horticultural farms. The creation of such possibilities for a collaboration will offer disabled people a participation in general working life. The identification of suitable working processes and tasks requires the compilation of culture related activity and ability profiles for working processes or tasks. In order to be able to find out which crops require what kind of working skills, the tasks and sub-tasks referring to the crops cultivated by up to 6 representative Austrian horticultural farms must be identified. The method used is the classification of REFA time studies. In order to determine the skills and needs of disabled people in day-care centers, it is necessary to capture their abilities, by creating ability profiles for up to 50 persons. Based on these ability profiles, it is possible to allocate and categorize the necessary tasks. The ability profiles will be created mainly by means of the well-proven “IMBA method” (Integration of persons with disabilities in a working environment). In order to set up a fruitful collaboration, horticultural farms and day-care centers will be interviewed about their interests, needs and expectations. On the basis of this information, it will be possible to give recommendations for a sustainable collaboration. Based on the surveyed results and identified requirements, a training concept for nursing staff, company managers and trainers will be developed and optimized in order to guarantee a high degree of working quality and job satisfaction for both parties in the project (social sustainability, which offers socially produced products). The efficient knowledge transfer of scientific results will be ensured by the production of blended learning material, a recommendation booklet and guidance of the implementation carried out in pilot companies.

Supervised Theses and Dissertations