The first objective of Legume Futures is to conduct case studies across Europe linked to established field experiments. In addition to providing experimental data for the environmental and economic assessments, these ‘case-studies’ inform and validate new cropping system designs and provide a focal point for the local development of the role of legumes in new cropping systems. This responds to the European Commission's request that on the basis of case studies, the project should take full consideration of the variety of agro-economic and pedo-climatic situations in Europe.
As set out in the project plan, the consortium’s 18 on-going experimental field sites are the primary source of quantitative information. This report provides an overview of the experiments used and reports in particular on insights the relevant participants in the form of 'participants case studies'. The results of the experiments conducted at these site are the subject of separate studies, particularly the environmental assessments and the five regional case studies reported elsewhere.
A case study is a research approach commonly used in social science that seeks to identify underlying principles by investigating a single individual, group or event (the case) in-depth. It comprises an empirical inquiry that investigates a phenomenon within its real-life context.
The main purpose of this report is to bring together participants backgrund knowledge and insights that they have developed over many years carrying out field research on legume-suppported cropping systems.
These case studies access knowledge and insights beyond our experiments. The starting point is the wider agricultural, economic and environmental context in which we work, not just our experiments. The case studies include knowledge from our experiments in the context of the regional agricultural systems where the experiment seeks to contribute.