The interface between urbanization and agriculture in the urbanizing Arab community in Israel: Baqa al-Gharbiyye as a case study

Michael Sofer, Noaman Ganayem

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review


The discussion focuses on the urbanization process and farmers’ responses to pressure on land resources in the town of Baqa al-Gharbiyye. The ongoing process of expansion of built-up areas, including areas for housing, industry and trades, commerce and public space, impacts the decreasing scope of agricultural areas whose relative weight within the town area has decreased significantly over the years, and at a faster pace in the past three decades. The analysis of urbanization and changes in land use is based on study of seven decades, from the 1940s through to the beginning of the second decade of the twenty-first century. Throughout this period, widespread economic and social changes took place in the Israeli economy in general and in the Arab sector specifically. Officials in the local authority claim that the scope of agricultural land will continue to decrease, agricultural lands will be diverted to local development needs and employment in agriculture will not promise sufficient income in the future for family farms active today. Given the shrinkage in the scope of agricultural lands and the changes in employment patterns in farm households, those who remain are struggling for the continued existence of their agricultural employment. Their leading strategy is changing the character of crops and for some, viewing agriculture as a partial income source. The younger generation is not continuing in the agricultural branch, while those with relatively higher education have additional occupations besides agriculture. Some farmers have developed new sources of employment connected to the agricultural branch such as leisure and educational farms. This entrepreneurial approach contributes to creating new workplaces and provides services to the local population.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationDilemmas of Regional and Local Development
PublisherTaylor and Francis
Number of pages18
ISBN (Electronic)9780429783272
ISBN (Print)9781138359154
StatePublished - 1 Jan 2020

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2020 selection and editorial matter, Jerzy Bański; individual chapters, the contributors.


Dive into the research topics of 'The interface between urbanization and agriculture in the urbanizing Arab community in Israel: Baqa al-Gharbiyye as a case study'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this