Julie Ingram and Jane Mills were in Fuzhou, China, between 8th and 18th September, visiting Fujian Agriculture and Forestry University and discussing potential research collaborations with the College of Landscape Architecture and the College of Economics (Rural Development). Whilst there, Julie and Jane gave seminars, met lecturers and students, as well as the University president and various heads of department, and had a productive meeting with researchers from Economics (Rural Development) and Landscape Architecture school in which they discussed research options.
They also enjoyed some field trips, which included Neilong village (2.5 hours SW of Fuzhou by high speed train then car), which is a typical rural village with an old earth built ’round house’. Whilst there, they had interesting discussions with a local NGO, the party official and other villagers. Julie and Jane noted a number of abandoned houses in the village, where villagers have moved out of these houses either into urban areas or into newly built houses in the village. They also visited an Agritourism organic demonstration farm in Da Yong, which runs a ‘pick your own’ fruit farm (1.5 hour drive from Fuzhou) where they discussed the business with the manager.
Julie and Jane also gave a talk on rural development in UK -food, farming and environment in a book shop in central Fuzhou.