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  • 1.
    Barjolle, Dominique
    et al.
    Swiss Institute of Organic Agriculture.
    Belletti, Giovanni
    University of Florence.
    Marescotti, Andrea
    University of Florence.
    Casabianca, Francois
    INRA.
    Cristóvão, Artur
    De Rosa, Marcello
    University of Cassino del Lazio Meridionale.
    Rytkönen, Paulina
    Södertörn University, School of Natural Sciences, Technology and Environmental Studies, Meal Sciences. Södertörn University, School of Social Sciences, ENTER forum.
    Prologue. The Role of Localised Agrifood Systems in a Globalised Europe2014In: International Agricultural Policy, ISSN 1722-4365, Vol. 1, 7-10 p.Article in journal (Refereed)
  • 2.
    Beyene, Atakilte
    The Nordic Africa Institute, Agrarian Change, Property and Resources.
    Large-scale land acquisitions in Tanzania and Ethiopia: a comparative perspective2015In: Looking back, looking ahead: land, agriculture and society in East Africa : a festschrift for Kjell Havnevik / [ed] Michael Ståhl, Uppsala: Nordiska Afrikainstitutet, 2015, 170-181 p.Chapter in book (Other academic)
  • 3.
    Chiotis, Thomas
    Linnaeus University, Faculty of Technology, Department of Informatics.
    Farmers, Intermediaries and ICTs in an Agricultural Community in Greece- an ethnographic study2017Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (Two Years)), 20 credits / 30 HE creditsStudent thesis
    Abstract [en]

    The purpose of this thesis is to assess the implications of Information Communication Technologies (ICTs) on the agricultural supply chain in Greece by examining the relationships between farmers and their intermediaries, and their interactions during the buying and selling process. More specifically, the focus of the research takes place in Pouri, a small village in central Greece whose economy centers around Apple Farming, where we can observe the exchange of locally grown goods between farmers and intermediaries. The thesis consists of two parts; the first part examines how Greek farmers perceive the process of buying and selling agricultural products and how they respond to problems within their current structure; through observing processes, conducting interviews and collecting narrative stories to identify the issues, we assess whether it would be advantageous for farmers to implement ICTs as part of the solution. The second part consists of a review of the academic literature to examine the same or similar situations in the agricultural supply chain of other global regions and their economic contexts. Lastly, a thorough thematic analysis of the research data provides a better understanding of the issues facing farmers and their needs as they pertain to ICTs, to improve the agricultural supply chain and the entire rural sector.

  • 4. Dedieu, Benoit
    et al.
    Darnhofer, Ika
    Bellon, S
    de Greef, K
    Casabianca, F
    Madureira, L
    Milestad, Rebecka
    Paine, M
    Steyaert, P
    Stobbelaar, D. J
    Zasser-Bedoya, S
    Introduction. Special issue: Innovations in farming systems approaches2009In: Outlook on Agriculture, ISSN 0030-7270, Vol. 38, no 2, 108-110 p.Article in journal (Other academic)
  • 5.
    Hallberg, David
    et al.
    The Swedish Red Cross University College, Department of Public Health and Medicine.
    Silva Franco, Melissa
    Fruits of our labour2016Other (Other (popular science, discussion, etc.))
    Abstract [en]

    The overall aim of the group is to examine how shortages of food and water lead to vulnerability to ill-health, abuse, and exploitation at the local level.

  • 6. Johansson, E.
    et al.
    Malik, A. H.
    Hussain, A.
    Rasheed, F.
    Newson, W. R.
    Plivelic, T.
    Hedenqvist, Mikael S.
    KTH, School of Chemical Science and Engineering (CHE), Fibre and Polymer Technology, Polymeric Materials.
    Gällstedt, M.
    Kuktaite, R.
    Wheat gluten polymer structures: The impact of genotype, environment, and processing on their functionality in various applications2013In: Cereal Chemistry, ISSN 0009-0352, Vol. 90, no 4, 367-376 p.Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    For a number of applications, gluten protein polymer structures are of the highest importance in determining end-use properties. The present article focuses on gluten protein structures in the wheat grain, genotype- and environment-related changes, protein structures in various applications, and their impact on quality. Protein structures in mature wheat grain or flour are strongly related to end-use properties, although influenced by genetic and environment interactions. Nitrogen availability during wheat development and genetically determined plant development rhythm are the most important parameters determining the gluten protein polymer structure, although temperature during plant development interacts with the impact of the mentioned parameters. Glutenin subunits are the main proteins incorporated in the gluten protein polymer in extracted wheat flour. During dough mixing, gliadins are also incorporated through disulfide-sulfhydryl exchange reactions. Gluten protein polymer size and complexity in the mature grain and changes during dough formation are important for breadmaking quality. When using the gluten proteins to produce plastics, additional proteins are incorporated in the polymer through disulfide-sulfhydryl exchange, sulfhydryl oxidation, β-eliminations with lanthionine formation, and isopeptide formation. In promising materials, the protein polymer structure is changed toward β-sheet structures of both intermolecular and extended type and a hexagonal close-packed structure is found. Increased understanding of gluten protein polymer structures is extremely important to improve functionality and end-use quality of wheat- and gluten-based products.

  • 7.
    Lundgren, Charlotte
    et al.
    Linköping University, Department of Culture and Communication, Swedish Studies and Comparative Literature. Linköping University, Faculty of Arts and Sciences.
    Zetterqvist Carlsson, Mari
    MZ Equitation, Sweden.
    “And now the ancle a bit further back”: Interaction analyses of trainers and riders work with horse-rider communication in dressage training2014In: CONFERENCE PROCEEDINGS 10TH INTERNATIONAL EQUITATION SCIENCE CONFERENCE, DCA - Danish Centre for Food and Agriculture , 2014Conference paper (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    In the equestrian sports we agree that the communication between horse and rider forms the core of good riding. This communication is therefore often the main focus of for instance a dressage training session. However, in-depth analyses of how the communication between horse and rider is used as an educational resource in training are scarce. Here, theories and methods from communication and learning science are brought together to show how trainers and riders together address this communication during intermediate level dressage training. The results presented are based on a qualitative, mixed methods study, combining interactional analyses of 15 hrs of video recordings of dressage trainings and phenomenographic analysis of interviews with the participants. Analyses of the interviews show the complexity of these learning situations: the foci of the training sessions vary depending on the riders’ and the horses’ condition and the goals set up by the human participants as well as on the experience of the horse and the rider. Regardless of the didactical focus (on training the rider, training the rider to train the horse or training the horse) and the scope of the training session, the analyses of the video recordings show how all trainers orient towards the horse-rider interaction in essentially the same three ways. The trainers give verbal instructions aimed at modifying the horse-rider communication, they use their own bodies as models and they intervene physically by for instance altering the posture of the rider, the position of parts of the rider’s body or showing the correct degree of pressure to be applied in a certain situation (and combinations of the above). However, trainers do not always set the agenda for the discussions. When given the opportunity, many riders participate actively the discussions. During the presentation, extracts from the video material will be used as illustrations of these findings. By enlightening the complex interaction between the participants as well as the interaction’s intrinsic connections to the goals of the training, it becomes possible to discuss (and further develop) the communication in the horse-rider-trainer triad within both the equestrian and the scientific communities.

  • 8.
    Mandere, Nicodemus
    et al.
    Lunds universitet.
    Persson, Andreas
    Lunds universitet.
    Anderberg, Stefan
    Linköping University, Department of Management and Engineering, Environmental Technology and Management. Linköping University, The Institute of Technology.
    Pilesjö, Petter
    Lunds universitet.
    Tropical Sugar Beet Land Evaluation Scheme: TSBLES: Development, validation and application under Kenyan conditions2010In: GeoJournal, ISSN 0343-2521, E-ISSN 1572-9893, Vol. 75, no 2, 215-228 p.Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    In Kenya the government is promoting diversification of crops to embrace high value crops and drought resistant crop varieties in efforts to reduce poverty in rural areas. Sugar beet is one of the crops considered as an option in this context and it is therefore important to increase knowledge about the potentials in the country for cultivating this crop. Sugar beet trials conducted in Nyandarua and Butere Mumias Districts of Kenya have shown that the crop yields are comparable to those obtained in traditional sugar-beet cultivation regions of Europe. Since sugar beet yield is affected by climate and soils, the results of Nyandarua and Butere Mumias sugar beet trials are not adequate to propose that comparable yields can be obtained elsewhere in the country and other tropical regions. Physical land evaluations assessing the potentials and constraints for sugar beet production are therefore essential. The objectives of this study was to develop a Tropical Sugar Beet Land Evaluation Scheme (TSBLES) that can aid assessment of the suitability of different areas in the tropics for sugar beet cultivation; and to test this scheme for an assessment of suitable sugar beet zones and land areas in Kenya. The development of the scheme was based on various literature sources and expert judgment on sugar beet requirements, and a Tropical Sugar Beet yield prediction Model. The TSBLES accounts for physical conditions of land i.e. climatic, edaphic and topographic conditions. According to the assessment results 27% of the land area in Kenya is suitable for sugar beet cultivation. Of this area, 5% is highly suitable, another 5% is moderately suitable and 17% is marginally suitable. Most of the highly suitable land area is concentrated in Rift Valley, Central and Nyanza provinces. The Rift Valley has the highest share of the suitable land area.

  • 9. Meissner, Katja
    et al.
    Buckland, Philip I.
    Umeå University, Faculty of Arts, Department of historical, philosophical and religious studies, Environmental Archaeology Lab.
    Linderson, Hans
    Lunds universitet.
    Hammarlund, Dan
    Lunds universitet.
    Pilotprojekt ”Dendro-databas” i SEAD: April 2012-juni 20122012Report (Other academic)
    Abstract [sv]

    Pilotprojektet ”Dendro-databas” är ett samarbetsprojekt mellan det Nationella laboratoriet för vedanatomi och dendrokronologi vid Lunds universitet och SEAD-projektet vid Miljöarkeo-4logiska laboratoriet, Umeå universitet. Tillsammans arbetar man med utvecklingen av en da-tabas för dendrokronologiska data som kommer att hanteras och förmedlas via SEAD:s data-basverktyg. I detta arbete ingår både systemutveckling för att anpassa SEAD:s struktur för nya datamängder och inmatning av omfattande testdataserier.

  • 10.
    Milestad, Rebecka
    et al.
    Centre for Sustainable Agriculture.
    Wivstad, Maria
    Department of Ecology and Plant Production.
    Lund, Vonne
    National Veterinary Institute.
    Geber, Ulrika
    Centre for Sustainable Agriculture.
    Goals and standards in Swedish organic farming: trading off between desirables2008In: International Journal of Agricultural Resources, Governance and Ecology, ISSN 1462-4605, Vol. 7, no 1-2, 23-39 p.Article, review/survey (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Organic farming is an explicitly value-based movement working towards a set of goals. The standards of organic farming serve the purpose of telling organic producers what they need to do, to be certified organic, but they are also as a means to steer them towards the goals of organic production. Both standards and goals are dynamic and subject to change. While goals can be broad and idealistic, standards need to be technically and economically feasible, measurable and possible to inspect. Some authors claim that the use of a regulation in organic farming accelerates the process towards conventionalisation while others see standards as a prerequisite for the success of organic farming. This paper analyses some of the conflicts inherent in the organic goals and the gaps that appear between goals and standards in organic farming in Sweden. For example, the goal of minimising use of fossil fuels is at odds with some of the other goals of organic farming. A way to accommodate the gaps is to develop intermediate goals that can be closer connected to the standards than the overall goals.

  • 11.
    Paju, Martin
    Swedish University of Agricultural Science/Department of Urban and Rural Development.
    Hälsingegården i omvandling: en studie av världsarvsprocessen i Hälsingland2016Doctoral thesis, monograph (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    The Decorated Farms of Hälsingland in transition - a study of a World Heritage process in Hälsingland

    On July 1st, 2012 seven agricultural properties in Gävleborg County in the province of Hälsingland, in Sweden were approved and inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage list under the collective name “Decorated Farms of Hälsingland” (hälsingegårdarna). The thesis describes and discusses the processes and negotiations that arose in connection with a number of events and actors who showed an interest in these properties and other cultural environments being nominated for the UNESCO World Heritage list. Adding natural or cultural objects to the World Heritage list often involves long-term cooperation between actors who in different ways exhibit interest and involvement in such a process.

    The efforts to nominate hälsingegårdarna to the World Heritage list began in the mid-1990s with support from different project including restoration activities, information campaigns and exhibitions. With the process, the farms and the brand Hälsingegårdarna were expected to fulfil a variety of features, including branding and as a symbol for the whole region.

    The thesis describes and analyses two parallel processes in the work with hälsingegårdarna. One is a regional support process initiated by the Regional Council of Gävleborg aimed at preparing, marketing and promote the prospective World Heritage nomination in connection with development perspectives. Within the framework of a project which was entitled “Hälsingegårdarna – Kulturarv och Utveckling” (Hälsingegårdarna: Cultural Heritage and Development) the work with a local anchoring process took place. The other process was a bureaucratic one which included work with the nomination process, written documentation and the selection of which farms to include. This work was guided by formal regulations in the Swedish administrative system and UNESCO processing forms and ideals.

    The empirical data shows that the definitions, use, and management of this cultural capital took place within the context of specific social orders and bargaining games in which questions of definition of rights and interpretative prerogative were important. The analytical processing is based on a theoretical framework where concepts such as symbolic capital and social fields are key tools. These concepts are derived from theories developed by the sociologist Pierre Bourdieu.

    The World Heritage work within Gävleborg County has been driven mainly from two different positions of strength. On the one hand, a developmentoriented position where stakeholders in the tourism sector with the aid of a World heritage site attempted to increase their financial revenues. Some actors in this position also had a regional political agenda with ambitions to reverse a negative trend of emigration, rising unemployment and falling property values.

    On the other hand, there was a position oriented towards preservation in which cultural values were a claim to form a symbolic capital not subject to demands for utility or financial returns from various social actors.

    The two positions created a variety of discourses articulating both cultural resources and economic development, and were played out in negotiations around the hälsingegårdarna and their world heritage status.

    The social fields in which players seek positions are in many respects shaped around a hierarchical management structure that defines regulations and legislation in the areas of cultural environment and world heritage. Various formal regulations in the preservation of international cultural environments created space for negotiations and various struggles between participating actors. An example is when the arguments for conservation, management and use of cultural heritage sites are adapted to a broader development discourse in which cultural values are assumed to be converted into financial resources for competing interests in an open market.

    The World Heritage issue in Gävleborg shows that a regional and comprehensive cultural or natural phenomenon, nominated for the World Heritage list, may spawn disagreements which are not necessarily accentuated in relation to the UNESCO requirements demanding local support. One incentive for concealing conflicts and local tensions is concern among stakeholders that open conflicts may lead to a questioning of the nomination.

    In the World Heritage process, we can also detect signs of a dichotomy between a centre and a periphery, between urban life and rural and local economic needs. The work on hälsingegårdarna was by many actors described as a topdown project and this has, therefore, also led to conflicts. In other words, the initiative, nomination work and the local anchoring process have mainly been prompted by regional authorities, and local and private interests have been invited to participate in the processes as recipients of planning, resource allocations and decisions.

    These circumstances provide scope for questions about how power relations are associated with cooperation and common goals in relation to the region’s development. The interplay between the various actors in the development project “Hälsingegårdarna – kulturarv och utveckling” can also be seen as an interaction between actors at various levels of society. In projects funded by regional development funds, different actors often have given roles and positions. Officials and politicians manage resources, administer and take crucial decisions while individuals and non-profit organizations often take on the role of the executive party. Such a project-culture involves a test of positions, creating a playing field in which stakeholders are struggling for resources, recognition and interpretative prerogatives.

    Hälsingegårdarna and their World Heritage status were also highlighted on the basis of an overall regional strategic discourse on values. This deals with questions about growth and development, inter alia by encouraging strong business life in the region. Increasing number of businesses and job opportunities in the so-called cultural branches of business and in this way appearing attractive to different kinds of establishment is an important goal. In such a perspective, hälsingegårdarna and the World Heritage fit in well, because these phenomena are closely linked to culture, business and tourist enterprises. They are even linked to themes where knowledge is important, such as in architecture, ethnology, art history and building.

    Although the hälsingegårdarna are local in the sense that they are located in one place and provide livelihood opportunities in local society, local needs tend to given less emphasis, when these farms become part of a regional development strategy. The impact of such a move will have additional strength when, with support from UNESCO, the entire process becomes part of a globalized economy. When hälsingegårdarna are constructed as a “strategic resource” at regional, national and global levels, positions are defined in novel ways.

    While the interest and involvement in history and the heritage of places and their environments has increased, values in relation to such heritages and their history will also become integrated into policy areas linked to regional development. Hence, when the World Heritage issue appeared in Gävleborg, many actors considered this to be an opportunity to link this to various conceptions of development.

    This study of the process of hälsingegårdarna and their world heritage nomination shows how local mobilization can be developed in conjunction with a World Heritage nomination, where individual and organized actors at local and regional levels encounter a management culture which promotes and monitors bureaucratic and formal aspects of world heritage.

    The region of Gävleborg is slowly abandoning a resource-based industrial economy, adapting to an experience economy where supply and demand for cultural services increases. Many actors in Gävleborg consider the nomination process as a tool to adapt to this structural transformation. At the same time, there have been signals from national cultural policymakers regarding restrictions on new environments and objects to be nominated for World Heritage status. Hälsingegårdarna have come to be seen as an important tool for organizing the region’s development interests as well as a contested symbol in the interaction between the actors involved, where each farm has its own unique career as a private residence, a production unit or as part of the tourist industry.

    The results point out that the farms of Hälsingland and the World Heritage nomination evolve into a strong driving force in organizing regional interests and regional competition. The distribution of influence and power between different networks and actors was in many respects a matter of asserting the right to define what the process was all about and about identities in the social field. The study highlights the importance of social and cultural capital in encounters and negotiations at different levels of society, from local festivals and exhibitions to meetings between representatives from the provincial government, the regional museum and outside experts.

  • 12.
    Paschen, Jeannette
    et al.
    KTH, School of Industrial Engineering and Management (ITM), Industrial Economics and Management (Dept.).
    Paschen, Ulrich
    Kietzmann, Jan Henrik
    A votre sante - conceptualizing the AO typology for luxury wine and spirits2016In: International Journal of Wine Business Research, ISSN 1751-1062, E-ISSN 1751-1070, Vol. 28, no 2, 170-186 p.Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Purpose - The status of icewine as a luxury item is largely undisputed in popular perception. Despite this, icewine has received very little attention in the management literature. This paper aims to close this gap by developing a theoretical framework to segment the luxury wine and spirits market with a focus on icewine. Design/methodology/approach - This paper is conceptual in nature. The authors adapt Berthon et al.'s (2009) aesthetics and ontology (AO) framework for luxury brands to provide a theoretical lens for segmenting the luxury wine and spirits market into four distinct segments. Findings - The main contribution of this paper is a theoretical framework for segmenting the market for luxury wines and spirits into four distinct segments: cabinet collectors, cellar collectors, connoisseurs and carousers. The authors then apply their framework to the icewine category and outline considerations for the marketing mix of icewine producers. Practical implications - The AO framework for luxury wines and spirits is beneficial for icewine producers to help differentiate their current and future market segments. In addition, this paper outlines practical implications for icewine maker's marketing mix that could enhance their competitive position today and in the future. Originality/ value - This is the first paper examining icewine in the context of luxury marketing.

  • 13.
    Pettersson, Jan
    et al.
    Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Economics.
    Wikström, Johan
    Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Economics.
    Human fertilizer and the productivity of farming households2016In: Agroecology and Sustainable Food Systems, ISSN 2168-3565, E-ISSN 2168-3573, Vol. 40, no 1, 48-68 p.Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Ecological sanitation offers both sanitation and fertilizer through recycling of nutrients. Human fertilizer provides a close to free addition of nutrients in household farming and may, therefore, decrease the downward risk of fertilizer adoption. We study an ecological sanitation investment program in southern Mali, where just over 150 beneficiaries got a urine diverting dry toilet installed. Our results suggest that the average household in our study is able to produce amounts of N, P, and K equivalent to around a fourth of its yearly expenditures on artificial fertilizers, corresponding to a yearly addition of nutrients or a yearly reduction in fertilizer expenditures to a value of about 50 Euro. However, the quantity and quality of N, P, and K actually retained is found to be only a fraction of this potential amount. Using propensity score matching methods, we find an increase in maize yields among beneficiary households, but no effect on the yields of other crops. Moreover, households substitute artificial fertilizer with human fertilizer at 10-15% of the average household use of artificial fertilizers. Thus, the substitution may worsen an already bad soil nutrient balance. Higher retention levels are needed for solutions to prove financially viable.

  • 14.
    Rytkönen, Paulina
    Södertörn University, School of Natural Sciences, Technology and Environmental Studies, Meal Sciences.
    Constructing the new rurality - challenges and opportunities (of a recent shift?) for Swedish rural policies2014In: International Agricultural Policy, ISSN 1722-4365, no 2, 7-19 p.Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    This article highlights the outcomes of the implementation of the New Culinary Country program implemented in to facilitate and speed up the emergence of the new rurality in Sweden. Based on results from focus groups and one group interview conducted in eight landscapes/counties during 2013 and a state initiated evaluation of the NCCP, the study answers the following questions: What does the NCCP mean in terms of governance? How is power distributed and if possible, which are the consequences of this new governance regime? Which are the main challenges and opportunities of and for the NCCP? The results show that the NCCP has led to a higher degree of regional coordination of actions and resources at regional level. Cooperation and coordination in turn have proved to be the main factors behind the most successful experiences. 

  • 15.
    Solberg, Svein Øivind
    et al.
    Nordic Genetic Resource Center, Alnarp, Sweden.
    Kolodinska Brantestam, Agnese
    University of Latvia, Institute of Biology, Salaspils LV-2169, Latvia.
    Olsson, Kestin
    Nordic Genetic Resource Center, Alnarp, Sweden.
    Leino, Matti
    Linköping University, Department of Physics, Chemistry and Biology, Biology. Linköping University, Faculty of Science & Engineering. National Museum of Cultural History (Nordiska Museet), Julita, Sweden.
    Weibull, Jens
    Swedish Board of Agriculture, Plant and Environment Department, Plant Regulations Division, Jönköping, Sweden.
    Yndgaard, Flemming
    Nordic Genetic Resource Center, Alnarp, Sweden.
    Diversity in local cultivars of Pisum sativum collected from home gardens in Sweden2015In: Biochemical Systematics and Ecology, ISSN 0305-1978, E-ISSN 1873-2925, Vol. 62, 194-203 p.Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Although one would assume that finding any local cultivars in home gardens in a modern society such as Sweden is unlikely, such cultivars were in fact found. More than 170 seed accessions of vegetables, pulses and other seed-propagated garden crops maintained in home gardens and dating back at least to the 1950s have been assembled following the nationwide ‘Seed Call’. Of these, 32 garden pea accessions were taxonomically characterized and compared with 43 accessions already present in the gene bank. In addition tomorphological descriptors, SSR and retrotransposon-based iPBS markers were applied. Based on five SSR markers, potential duplicates could be located within nine pair/groups, or 25% of the accessions. Through combining this analysis with iPBS markers, the potential duplicates were reduced to five pair/groups. Combination of markers and the morphological descriptors further reduced the number to two groups; one group including four wrinkle-seeded accessions and one including two other wrinkle-seeded accessions. Acombination of genotypic and phenotypic markers proved a good method to identify trueand false duplicates. The results showed that the ‘Seed Call’ complements the NordGen collection and broadens the collection's genetic diversity. No clustering according to region of origin could be found, suggesting that the collected material predominantly represents old cultivars.

  • 16.
    Sundström, Michaela
    et al.
    Halmstad University, School of Business and Engineering (SET).
    Tillman, Therese
    Halmstad University, School of Business and Engineering (SET).
    DIG - Djurskyddsindikatorer Gris: Ett system för att mäta välfärd i grisbesättningar2012Independent thesis Basic level (degree of Bachelor), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
  • 17.
    Zetterqvist Carlsson, Mari
    et al.
    MZ Equitation, Sweden.
    Lundgren, Charlotte
    Linköping University, Department of Culture and Communication, Swedish Studies and Comparative Literature. Linköping University, Faculty of Arts and Sciences.
    Riders´ perception of their communication with the horse2014In: CONFERENCE PROCEEDINGS 10TH INTERNATIONAL EQUITATION SCIENCE CONFERENCE: ISES 2014 10TH INTERNATIONAL EQUITATION SCIENCE CONFERENCE, DCA- Danish Centre for Food and Agriculture , 2014Conference paper (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    This study is part of a project with the overall aim to improve riding education through a better understanding of the interplay between rider, riding instructor and horse. The rider influences the horse through a combination of weight, leg and rein aids together with the voice. The horse responds to these and the rider receives and interprets these responses. The current study aimed to describe and analyse the riders´ perceptions and views on this communication. Fifteen experienced riders (all female) of intermediate level in dressage were recruited to participate in the study, most of them riding their own horses. The riders received private training from five experienced riding instructors/trainers. One training of each rider was video and audio recorded. Directly after the training, the riders watched 10 minutes from the video recording (stimulated recall) followed by a semi-structured in-depth interview. The riders were asked to give a general description of how they communicated with their horses. They were also asked to describe how they interpreted the horse’s responses to the rider’s signals and how they acted when the horse responded/or did not respond to their signals. The results showed that all riders were well aware of the importance of giving clear and precise signals to the horse and to remove a given signal (aid) as soon as the horse responds. Most riders (12 of 15) agreed that it is essential to check that the horse responds to the rider’s basic signals in the beginning of each training session. The riders also pointed out that it is important to adjust the aids to the character of the horse and to the current physical and mental status of their horse. When the horses responded correctly on the rider’s aids, the riders praised the horse either by using their voice or by petting the horse. When the horse did not respond as the rider wished, the riders generally repeated or strengthened their signals until they received a desired response. Interestingly, a major part of the riders (13 of 15) blamed themselves when the communication with the horse failed. In conclusion, the riders seemed to be aware of the practical application of the basic principles of learning theory, even if they were not familiar with the terminology. However, the riders also reported that in practice they perceived difficulties to control their own bodies and to adequately give and release their signals.

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