This paper examines the development of agroecology as a scientific discipline, a set of management practices, and a social movement in Chile between the 1980s and 2000s. While experiencing the effects of radical neoliberal economic reforms implemented during the dictatorship of Augusto Pinochet, scientific communities, non-profit organizations, and ecclesiastical institutions shaped agroecology as a contesting project for agricultural democratization in Chile.
Within a growing international scientific awareness about the environmental effects of industrial agriculture, Chile's agroecological movement contested the dominant narrative of the "economic miracle" and placed small-scale farmers and indigenous communities at the center of an alternative project for "sustainable development." The history of agroecology in Chile unveils links between agrotechnological change, democratization movements, and environmental justice in Latin America. It places agricultural and ecological experts, small-scale farmers, and research institutions within a broader history of environmental movements in Chile. And re-centers the role of Latin America and indigenous epistemologies within global environmental policies and politics.
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