Shifting Traditions: Perspectives of Saffron Farmers in the Khorasan Province of Iran on Climate Change and Technological Development

Helia Bidad : Society & Environment major and Geospatial Information Science & Technology minor

Mentor: Kate O’Neill, Environmental Science, Policy, & Management

Ninety percent of the world’s saffron is grown in Iran and 90% of saffron in Iran is grown in the Khorasan Province. Saffron production as a traditional farming system is developing in its relationship with climate change and with the spread of technology into agriculture. Understanding how farmers view and interact with these developments is important in understanding saffron as a traditional farming system in Iran. Through in-person interviews in Iran and secondary research, Helia will analyze the perspectives of saffron farmers in Khorasan on climate change, what impacts they have observed, how they have adapted to said impacts, and how valuable they believe traditional methods have been in this process. It will also assess farmers’ perspectives on technology, especially as it compares to the traditional farming system in place.