Analysis of structure and function of an agroecological beacon: The case of the Agroecological Educational Center Los Álamos SUMMARY


Fernando Ríos y Valles-Boyselle
José Regalado López
José A. Méndez-Espinoza
Javier Ramírez-Juárez
Nicolás Pérez-Ramírez
Ignacio Ocampo-Fletes


Agroecology, agroecological beacon, indigenous youth.


Objective: To determine whether the Agroecological Educational Center Los Álamos (Centro Educativo Agroecológico Los Álamos, CEA), located in the state of Tlaxcala, Mexico, fulfills the elements of structure and function to be identified as an agroecological beacon.

Design/Methodology/Approach: A mixed approach was used (quantitative and qualitative). A study case of the CEA was constructed to understand both the context and the structural and functional characteristics that currently configure it. First, an exhaustive review of secondary information related to the structure and functioning of agroecological beacons in other regions or countries was made. In a second stage, a comparative analysis of the structural and functional characteristics of agroecological beacons was conducted with the data generated in the study case. In the third stage, factors were analyzed that make possible or limit the CEA to develop as an agroecological beacon.

Results: The CEA performs and fulfills with participant youth the function of agroecological beacon, since it is an efficient tool for education, training, knowledge exchange and promotion of agroecology. This favors its dissemination and scaling in the peasant communities where the young people who participate in the CEA are from.

Study Limitations/Implications: The results are only applicable to the study case due to the limitations present in this methodology in terms of its results not allowing to elaborate general explanations.

Findings/Conclusions: The CEA complies with sufficient elements to catalog it as a sectorial agroecological beacon, which is contributing a methodological and strategic light to respond to the challenge of inter-generational transmission of understanding, knowledge and agroecological projects in the peasant indigenous youth sphere

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