A Framework for assessing Alternative Agro-Ecosystems: finding Multi-Functional Solutions for Sustainable urban landscapes. Thesis

thesis or dissertation chair

fiu authors

  • Thiesen, Thais H


  • Creating sustainable urban landscapes in light of growing population pressures requires interdisciplinary multi-functional solutions. Alternative agro-ecosystems described as food forests, permaculture gardens, and/or edible landscapes among others could offer potential ways to address the social, economic and ecological goals of various stakeholders simultaneously. The present research used a unique rubric, the Permaculture and Agro-ecosystems Sustainability Scorecard (PASS) that combines existing agricultural and landscape sustainability indicators in order to assess alternative agro-ecosystems. The rubric evaluates provisioning, regulating, supporting and cultural ecosystem services such as pollinator presence, biodiversity, pesticides and fertilizer use, carbon sequestration and human interactions. The PASS was used to score twelve sites in South Florida that meet specific criteria in the small farm, residential and public space categories. The results showed that the majority of the sites scored highest in the supporting services provided, followed by regulating and cultural services and lowest in the economic services category.

publication date

  • November 9, 2016


  • agroecology
  • ecosystem services
  • landscape
  • permaculture

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)