How We Work
Established in 1983 as an independent organization focused on alternative agriculture, the Institute for Alternative Agriculture originated as a research institution, publishing the highly-regarded, peer-reviewed American Journal of Alternative Agriculture, among other publications and newsletters. In 1992, the Institute for Alternative Agriculture became the Henry A. Wallace Institute for Alternative Agriculture in recognition of the achievements of the former Secretary of Agriculture and 33rd Vice President of the United States.
In 2000, the Institute joined Winrock International. Operating as a separate division within Winrock, the Institute was renamed the Henry A. Wallace Center for Agricultural and Environmental Policy. The merger was the outcome of the organizations’ desire to come together to champion improvements in agricultural production and environmental outcomes, domestically and abroad, as well as address the socioeconomic conditions and structures underpinning them.
Since then, the Wallace Center has been working both independently as well as in concert with other Winrock groups on a variety of regional and national initiatives, as well as countless partners and collaborators from the public, private, and nonprofit sectors. Our work is guided by eight overarching strategies, informed by our values, our commitment to racial equity, our human-centered cultural agreements, and the leadership of our predecessors, peers, and emerging leaders.
Foster authentic partnerships and collaborations
We develop and maintain long-term, trusted, reciprocal relationships with strategic partners across sectors and geographies through servant leadership and followership.
Nourish and amplify community leadership
We offer opportunities to individuals and organizations to cultivate and strengthen their capacities for advancing transformational systems change.
Strengthen fields of practice through targeted support
We develop and deliver technical assistance, trainings, mentorship opportunities, and resources that build the skills and capacities necessary for successful farms, food businesses, and community-based organizations.
Change the narrative on farming and food systems
We engage broad and diverse audiences to raise awareness of critical issues, challenge prevailing narratives, and ensure the needs and assets of practitioners are understood, represented, and included.
Link funders to on-the-ground work
We partner with funders and investors to champion cutting edge trends, disseminate best practices, and regrant private and public funding to accelerate systems change.
Advance new ideas through applied research
We generate knowledge, tools, and actionable frameworks that empower practitioners, catalyze new relationships, and drive progress.
Cultivate peer-to-peer learning networks and communities of practice
We connect public and private practitioners to transform individual efforts into shared intellectual and social capital to scale impact.
Identify and share emerging innovations and best practices
We cultivate shifts in thinking and practice by lifting up and normalizing equity-based strategies and solutions that build healthy economies and ecosystems.