Object structure

Exploring relations between community gardens and cultural institutions in terms of diverse governance models: A case study of Warsaw and Poznań, Poland


Przegląd Geograficzny T. 96 z. 1 (2024)


Maćkiewicz, Barbara : Autor Affiliation ORCID ; Jeziorek, Paulina : Autor Affiliation



Place of publishing:


Date issued/created:



24 cm

Subject and Keywords:

urban agriculture ; urban community gardens ; governance ; cultural institutions ; Poland


The ongoing academic debate shows that urban community gardening has diverse governance models with differing roles for governmental organizations, NGOs and local communities. However, the perspective of community gardens governed by the involvement of institutions is rarely explored in academic research. This paper use a two-case study approach to explore the relations between community gardens and cultural institutions. We first identify factors that promote and impede the functioning of community gardens in partnership with cultural institutions. Next, we recognize initial governance models for selected case studies. Finally, we try to identify any changes in these governance structures, depending on the different stages of garden development and determine the reasons behind them. The results show these gardens are characterized by a changing governance model, shifting towards a top-down model, in which community members have no influence on strategic decisions. The involvement of cultural institutions in running community gardens is not assessed in a solely positive light. Although it facilitates their longevity, at the same time it may disempower their viability.


Austin, E.N., Johnston, Y.A.M., & Lindsay, L.M. (2006). Community gardening in a senior center: a therapeutic intervention to improve the health of older adults. Therapeutic Recreation Journal, 40(1), 48‑57.
Bach, C.E., & McClintock, N. (2021). Reclaiming the city one plot at a time? DIY garden projects, radical democracy, and the politics of spatial appropriation. Environment and planning C: politics and space, 39(5), 859‑878. https://doi.org/10.1177/2399654420974023 DOI
Bazuń, D., & Kwiatkowski, M. (2022). Exploratory walk and local cohesion-the concept and application. Mobilities, 17(4), 565‑584. https://doi.org/10.1080/17450101.2021.1999775 DOI
Creswell, J.W., & Clark, V.L.P. (2007). Designing and Conducting Mixed Methods Research: Thousand Oaks. CA: Sage Publications.
Crossan, J., Cumbers, A., & McMaster, R. (2018). Contesting neoliberal urbanism in Glasgow's community gardens: The practice of DIY citizenship. In: C. Tornaghi, & C. Certomà (Eds.), Urban Gardening as Politics (pp. 202‑224). London: Routledge.
Crossan, J., Cumbers, A., McMaster, R. & Shaw, D. (2016) Contesting neoliberal urbanism in Glasgow's community gardens: The practice of DIY citizenship. Antipode: A Radical Journal of Geography, 48(4), 937‑955. https://doi.org/10.1111/anti.12220 DOI
D'Abundo, M.L., & Carden, A.M. (2008). Growing wellness: the possibility of promoting collective wellness through community garden education programs. Community Development, 39(4), 83‑94. https://doi.org/10.1080/15575330809489660 DOI
De Young, R., Scheuer, K., Roush, J., & Kozeleski, K. (2016). Student interest in campus community gardens: sowing the seeds for direct engagement with sustainability. In: W. Leal Filho & M. Zint (Eds.), The contribution of social sciences to sustainable development at universities (pp. 161‑175). World Sustainability Series. Cham: Springer. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-26866-8_10 DOI
Diaz, J., Webb, S., Warner, L., & Monaghan, P. (2018). Barriers to community garden success: Demonstrating framework for expert consensus to inform policy and practice. Urban Forestry and Urban Greening, 31, 197‑203. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ufug.2018.02.014 DOI
Eizenberg, E. (2011). Actually Existing Commons: Three Moments of Space of Community Gardens in New York City. Antipode: A Radical Journal of Geography, 44/3, 764‑782. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1467-8330.2011.00892.x DOI
Etikan, I., Musa, S.A., & Alkassim, R.S. (2016). Comparison of convenience sampling and purposive sampling. American journal of theoretical and applied statistics, 5(1), 1‑4. https://doi.org/10.11648/j.ajtas.20160501.11 DOI
Firth, C., Maye, D., & Pearson, D. (2011). Developing "community" in community gardens. Local Environment, 16(6), 555‑568. https://doi.org/10.1080/13549839.2011.586025 DOI
Flick, U. (2007). Designing Qualitative Research. London: Sage Publications. DOI
Fox-Kämper, R. (2016). Concluding remarks. In: S. Bell, R. Fox-Kämper, N. Keshavarz, M. Benson, S. Caputo, S. Noori & A. Voigt (Eds.), Urban allotment gardens in Europe (pp. 364‑369). Abingdon: Routledge. DOI
Fox-Kämper, R., Wesener, A., Münderlein, D., Sondermann, M., McWilliam, W., & Kirk, N. (2018). Urban community gardens: An evaluation of governance approaches and related enablers and barriers at different development stages. Landscape and Urban Planning, 170, 59‑68. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.landurbplan.2017.06.023 DOI
George, D.R., & Ethridge, A.E. (2023). Hospital-based community gardens as a strategic partner in addressing community health needs. American journal of public health, 113(9), 939‑942. https://doi.org/10.2105/AJPH.2023.307336 DOI
Ghose, R., & Pettygrove, M. (2014). Actors and networks in urban community garden development. Geoforum, 53, 93‑103. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.geoforum.2014.02.009 DOI
Göttl, I., & Penker, M. (2020). Institutions for Collective Gardening: A Comparative Analysis of 51 Urban Community Gardens in Anglophone and German-Speaking Countries. International Journal of the Commons, 14(1), 30‑43. https://www.jstor.org/stable/27016551 DOI
Jacob, M., & Rocha, C. (2021). Models of governance in community gardening: Administrative support fosters project longevity. Local Environment, 26(5), 557‑574. https://doi.org/10.1080/13549839.2021.1904855 DOI
Kanosvamhira, T.P. (2023). The institutionalisation of urban community gardens in Cape Town, South Africa. Area, 00, 1‑10. https://doi.org/10.1111/area.12911 DOI
Kosińska, O. (2020). Sektor kultury w Polsce: organizacja, finanse, otoczenie. In: A. Pluszyńska, A. Konior & Ł. Gaweł (Eds.), Zarządzanie w kulturze: teoria i praktyka. Warszawa: Wydawnictwo Naukowe PWN.
Lewczuk, K., & Garczarczyk, M. (2021). Ogrody społeczne w Poznaniu. In: Społeczny Poznań KMP Poznań (pp. 245‑259). Kronika Miasta Poznania, 3, Poznań.
Lewczuk, K. (2021). O ogrodach społecznych z łazarskiej perspektywy ogrodu Kolektyw Kąpielisko. In: Społeczny Poznań KMP Poznań (pp. 260‑263). Kronika Miasta Poznania, 3, Poznań.
Maćkiewicz, B., Asuero, R.P., & Pawlak, K. (2018). Reclaiming urban space: A study of community gardens in Poznań. Quaestiones Geographicae, 37(4), 131‑150. https://doi.org/10.2478/quageo-2018-0042 DOI
McCann, E., McClintock, N., & Miewald, C. (2023). Mobilizing 'impermaculture': Temporary urban agriculture and the sustainability fix. Environment and Planning E: Nature and Space, 6(2), 952‑975. https://doi.org/10.1177/25148486221115950 DOI
McGlone, P., Dobson, B., Dowler, E., & Nelson, M. (1999). Food projects and how they work. YPS and Joseph Rowntree Foundation, York Publishing for Joseph Rowntree Foundation. Retrived from: https://www.jrf.org.uk/food-projects-and-how-they-work (02.04.2024).
McKay, G. (2011). Radical gardening: politics, idealism & rebellion in the garden. London: Frances Lincoln.
Nettle, C. (2014). Community gardening as social action. London: Routledge. https://doi.org/10.4324/9781315572970 DOI
Ponstingel, D. (2021). The Governance of Community gardens as Commons and Its Role in the Socio-Environmental Outcomes of Gardening in Austin, TX. Texas State University-San Marcos [Doctoral dissertation] DOI
Ponstingel, D. (2022). The governance of community gardens as commons and its role in the socio-ecological outcomes of gardening in Austin, Texas, USA. Socio-Ecological Practice Research, 4(4), 355‑376. https://doi.org/10.1007/s42532-022-00133-7 DOI
Rosol, M. (2012). Community volunteering as neoliberal strategy? Green space production in Berlin. Antipode: A Radical Journal of Geography, 44(1), 239‑257. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1467-8330.2011.00861.x DOI
Schmelzkopf, K. (2002). Incommensurability, land use, and the right to space: Community gardens in New York City. Urban Geography, 23(4), 323‑343. https://doi.org/10.2747/0272-3638.23.4.323 DOI
Škamlová, L., Wilkaniec, A., Szczepańska, M., Bačík, V., & Hencelová, P. (2020). The development process and effects from the management of community gardens in two post-socialist cites: Bratislava and Poznań. Urban Forestry & Urban Greening, 48, 126572. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ufug.2019.126572 DOI
Staeheli, L.A., Mitchell, D., & Gibson, K. (2002). Conflicting rights to the city in New York's community gardens. GeoJournal, 58(2‑3), 197‑205. https://doi.org/10.1023/b: gejo.0000010839.59734.01 DOI
Willman, K. (2023). "It's Not Only Our Task" Administrative Barriers of Enabling Urban Gardening in Tampere, Finland. ACME: An International Journal For International Geographies, 22(2), 921‑946. https://doi.org/10.7202/1100521ar DOI
Yin, R.K. (2018). Case Study Research and Applications. Design and Methods. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications.
Zhang, X., Pan, D., Wong, K., & Zhang, Y. (2022). A new Top-Down governance approach to community gardens: A case study of the "we garden" community experiment in Shenzhen, China. Urban Science, 6(2), 41. https://doi.org/10.3390/urbansci6020041 DOI
Zielińska, E. (2020). Hackerspace'y, ogrody społeczne, niezależne centra kultury. Samoorganizacja w przestrzeni miejskiej w Polsce w XXI w. In: B. Lewenstein, A. Gójska, E. Zielińska (Eds.), Aktywizmy miejskie (pp. 181‑213), Warszawa: Scholar.


Przegląd Geograficzny





Start page:


End page:


Resource type:


Detailed Resource Type:




Resource Identifier:

0033-2143 (print) ; 2300-8466 (on-line) ; 10.7163/PrzG.2024.1.5


CBGiOS. IGiPZ PAN, sygn.: Cz.181, Cz.3136, Cz.4187 ; click here to follow the link



Language of abstract:



Creative Commons Attribution BY 4.0 license

Terms of use:

Copyright-protected material. [CC BY 4.0] May be used within the scope specified in Creative Commons Attribution BY 4.0 license, full text available at: ; -

Digitizing institution:

Institute of Geography and Spatial Organization of the Polish Academy of Sciences

Original in:

Central Library of Geography and Environmental Protection. Institute of Geography and Spatial Organization PAS

Projects co-financed by:

Programme Innovative Economy, 2010-2014, Priority Axis 2. R&D infrastructure ; European Union. European Regional Development Fund





Citation style: