Fields of Expertise

Sustainable Food Systems


The research group aims to identify and support pathways to sustainable development in local food systems.

Established in 2016, the research group explores the areas of food production and food consumption in a range of interdisciplinary and transdisciplinary projects at both national and international levels. Current research topics are integrated into the Bachelor's degree programme in Sustainable Food Management and the Master's degree programme in Food: Product and Process Design. The research group is coordinated by Ulrike Seebacher.

Research topics
  • Regional and local food supply schemes of the future
  • Urban-rural relationships for food production and consumption
  • Sustainable food innovations
Methodological focus
  • Initiation and support of stakeholder processes
  • Food system analysis and evaluation, including lifecycle-based analysis and evaluation
  • Innovation and foresight research: roadmapping, scenario techniques
  • Qualitative social research, including interviews, focus group discussions, photo voice
Research team

Reference projects

Selected publications

  • Berner, S., Derler, H., Rehorska, R., Pabst, S., Seebacher, U. Roadmapping to Enhance Local Food Supply: Case Study of a City-Region in Austria. Sustainability 2019, 11, 3876.
  • Derler, H., Berner, S., Grach, D., Posch, A., & Seebacher, U. (2020). Project-Based Learning in a Transinstitutional Research Setting: Case Study on the Development of Sustainable Food Products. Sustainability, 12(1), 233.
  • Seebacher, U., Domenig, C., Derler, H. (2019): Praxismappe Jugendliche entwickeln Lebensmittelprodukte. Unterrichtsmodule zur Vermittlung von Ernährungs- und MINT-Kompetenzen, Graz, Verlag der FH JOANNEUM Gesellschaft mbH. ISBN 9783902103901
  • Seebacher, U., Lüking, T., Pötsch, N., Pabst, S., Rehorska, R., Weinrauch, S. (2018): Kleinbauernhof im 21. Jahrhundert. Verlag der FH JOANNEUM Gesellschaft mbH, Graz. ISBN: 978-3-902103-81-9
  • Haas, J., Seebacher, U. (2016): Promotion of innovative agriculture through co-operative and work-integrated education. 26. Jahrestagung der Österreichischen Gesellschaft für Agrarökonomie, Wien.

Previous research cooperation partners

  • Institut Diätologie, FH JOANNEUM
  • Institut Architektur & Management, FH JOANNEUM
  • Stadtlabor
  • RMA
  • 17&4
  • Grottenhof
  • Umweltdachverband
  • Landwirtschaftskammer Steiermark
  • Die Jungen Wilden
  • HLA Schulschwestern Graz Eggenberg
  • HTL Bulme Graz Gösting