31 July 2019
Best in class

Irish organic farming student wins top prize

31 July 2019
HAWL bursaries

Bursaries offered for three-day homoeopathy courses



21 March 2019
In adversity, what are farmers doing to be more resilient?

Opportunities, barriers and constraints in organic techniques helping to improve the sustainability of conventional farming

Dr. Abel Villa

Job title

Researcher Agricultural Supply Chains

Contact details

Email prefix: abel.v (add suffix @organicresearchcentre.com)
Phone: +44(0)1635 646255 - extn. 6255
Postal address: Elm Farm, Hamstead Marshall, Newbury RG20 0HR

Academic qualifications

  • PhD: Villa, A. (2018) Global Value Chains (GVC) and Social Learning. Developing Producer Capabilities in Smallholder Farmers. The case of San Francisco Produce/Peninsula Organics (SFP/PO). The University of Edinburgh
  • Master of Social Science (2011) focused on Global Value Chains and Innovation Systems studies. El Colegio de Sonora. Mexico.

Main roles and responsibilities

Currently involved in the following projects:

  • DiverIMPACTS: Diversification through Rotation, Intercropping, Multiple cropping, Promoted with Actors and value-Chains Towards Sustainability.
  • CERERE: CEreal REnaissance in Rural Europe

Research interests

I am an interdisciplinary researcher with a background in Agricultural Supply Chains and social sciences. My research interests are twofold:

  1. the development of producer capabilities in smallholder farms and
  2. social learning for co-operation and knowledge co-creation.
I combine Global Value Chains, Technological Capabilities and Communities of Practice approaches.

Selected publications

Villa Rodríguez AO (2018). Global Value Chains (GVC) and Social Learning. Developing Producer Capabilities in Smallholder Farmers. The case of San Francisco Produce/Peninsula Organics (SFP/PO). PhD Thesis. The University of Edinburgh.

Villa Rodríguez AO Ed (2016). The role of regional innovation systems (RIS) in creating technological capabilities (TC) in the agricultural sector of Northwest Mexico: the cases of Sonora and Baja California Sur. In Niebla Zatarain JM, Villa Rodríguez AO, Fuentes Pineda R, Casasola Zamora S (Eds.), XIV Symposium of Mexican Students and Studies “Knowledge into Solutions” (pp. 14–16). Edinburgh, UK.

Villa Rodriguez AO, Bracamonte SA (2013). Learning processes and productive modernization of learning in agriculture from Northwestern Mexico: cases of commercial agriculture of the Coast of Hermosillo, Sonora and organic agriculture of the Southern zone of Baja California Sur. Estudios fronterizos, 14(27), 217–254.