Document Type

Honors Paper


Michelle Neely

Publication Date



Urban agriculture has the potential to be a source of great social and environmental good within a city. This study couples in-depth interviews with urban farmers with secondary research to provide a holistic understanding of the urban agriculture movement in Mumbai, Maharastra, India and New York City, New York, USA. Through this resource, it became apparent that the two movements vary drastically in terms of size, scope, resource availability, and movement goals. Despite these differences, the research points to one striking similarity. In both cities, farms and gardens in lower income areas have access to a far smaller body of resources than their counterparts in wealthier areas. Additionally, both movements struggle to form networks across socioeconomic divides. This study utilizes four social movement theories to determine why two movements that vary so drastically show such similar patterns when it comes to resource distribution and network formation. Resource mobilization theory, political opportunity structure, ideologically structured action, and new social movement theory will be utilized in order to solve this puzzle. The end result is an in-depth understanding of these two complex movements. This study may serve to inform future action surrounding urban agriculture in the two cities as well as to provide suggestions for budding movements in urban areas across the globe.



The views expressed in this paper are solely those of the author.