[PhD student] Nadège Ressia

[PhD student] Nadège Ressia: Agriculture crowdfunding platforms

Thesis topic labeled by #DigitAg

Agriculture crowdfunding platforms

N Ressia
Nadège Ressia © #DigitAg

I'm a PhD student at UMR AGIR (AGroécologie - innovations - TeRritoires) in Toulouse, in the ACT department. I am partly funded by Inrae and partly by Labex SMS. I did a bachelor's degree and a first master's in law. However, I realized that I wanted to deepen my understanding of the economic world by understanding the interactions between individuals. That's why I went back to school to study for a master's degree in sociology. My interest is in the relationship between the economy and the ecological transition, highlighting the interrelationships between the economy and legal and social norms. My thesis focuses on crowdfunding platforms, which enable users to raise funds from the general public. Since their creation in 2010, these platforms have played a residual but growing role in financing a changing agricultural sector. These platforms are raising many questions, as they present themselves as drivers of the agro-ecological transition. By positioning themselves at the center of supply and demand, these platforms are overturning the institutions of agricultural finance. My sociology thesis, which began in November 2022, aims to understand how these platforms are transforming these institutions. To this end, I am using a mixed-method approach combining semi-structured interviews, historical analysis and participant observation, as well as a quantitative approach. 

  • Starting date : 6 November 2022
  • Research unit: Agir
  • University : University of Toulouse - Jean Jaurès
  • PhD school : TESC 
  • Scientific field : Sociology - Economics
  • Thesis management : Pierre Labarthe, UMR Agir, Inrae
  • Thesis supervisors : Pierre Labarthe, UMR Agir, Inrae and Julien Brailly, Université Fédérale de Toulouse INP-ENSAT
  • Funding: Inrae - LabEx SMS
  • #DigitAg : Axe 1 : Impact des technologies de l'information et de la communication sur le monde rural, Axe 2 : Innovations en agriculture numérique, Challenge 1 : Le challenge agroécologique, Challenge 7 : Intégration de l’agriculture dans les chaînes de valeur

Keywords: Crowdfunding- financing - alternative financing - agriculture - platform capitalism - institution - bank - loan - share - sociology of markets - sociology of finance - sociology of agriculture

Abstract : Crowdfunding platforms enable users to raise funds from the general public. Since their creation in 2010, these platforms have played a residual (less than 1%) but growing role in funding projects in the agricultural sector, at a time when agriculture faces radical changes.
The emergence of these platforms raises a number of questions. They present themselves as a driving force for the agro-ecological transition, as an alternative to the traditional banking system that might hinder certain projects. However, they are forging partnerships with these traditional players, including banks. This raises questions about the reality of the transformations induced by platforms. 
This sociology thesis, which began in November 2022, aims to understand how platforms are transforming agricultural financing institutions.
To study these platforms, the thesis uses a mixed method of combining qualitative and quantitative approaches. Interviews will be conducted with the main players involved: farmers submitting projects, donors and lenders on the platforms, platform firms, etc. In addition, data will be extracted from the websites of these participative financing platforms (partly using a web scrapping approach). This data will characterize the project (purpose of the funding, agro-ecological dimension, etc.), the farmer behind it, and the economic performance indicators of the farms. The data will be used to establish a typology of the projects financed by the platforms and to compare the financial conditions with those applied in the traditional banking sector. It will then be possible to understand whether the platforms make it possible to bypass certain financing institutions that limit agro-ecological projects, or whether they reinforce them.

Contact: nadege.ressia [AT] inrae.fr

Social network: LinkedIn

Communications / Papers

« Les plateformes de financement de l’agriculture : vers un nouveau mode de financement ? », RIODD 2023 : Changer ou s’effondrer ?, Campus Cité Scientifique - Villeneuve d'Ascq


Modification date: 26 March 2024 | Publication date: 01 March 2024 | By: GL