The Politics of Food Governance

Civil Society
 
Foreign Policy
 
Governance
 
International Relations
 
Political Participation
 
Public Policy
 
Policy Change
 
Power
 
Section Number
S69
Section Chair
Jessica Duncan
Wageningen University and Research Center
Section Co-Chair
Gerard Breeman
Departments of Political Science and Public Administration, Universiteit Leiden

Abstract
During this conference we welcome Panels and Papers that critically analyze the struggle for power at the global level in relation to food governance. Since the adoption of the Sustainable Development Goals, especially Goal 2 which aims to eradicate hunger, many public and private players have been engaged in a benevolent and concerted action to reach the goals in 2030. At the same time international markets are globalizing leaving smallholders and other food producers as price takers, leaving them increasingly vulnerable and dependent. Organized (EU) farmers are also seriously affected by the globalization of food governance and the liberalization of the world markets. And all together it results in a complex power dynamic between emancipating smallholder social movements, resiliency-testing farmers from the EU, power/profit seeking multinationals, NGOs and governments.

These trends lead to shifting power relations both at the global, national, local level. The arenas where decisions are made and governance is shaped are changing. The arenas are becoming increasingly fragmented, changing the composition of players coming to the table. Furthermore, food governance players appear to be taking advantage of this fragmentation by forum shifting, opting to participate in fora that will best represent their interests. The responsibility of steering and monitoring food governance appears to be shifting from public agencies to transnational companies.

Given this context, we propose 4 Panels that welcome Papers addressing some of the following questions:
• Who is monitoring the progress of the sustainability goals and how? Who has access to data and who “owns” the data? Who designs the processes/algorithm to monitor progress?
• How are different players playing the game of food politics across different food governance context? How are antagonisms addressed?
• What are the effects of globalization on international governance structures: e.g. how do social movements empower and emancipate? What opportunities and challenges can be identified?
• What evidence is emerging for transitions in food governance? Are multi-stakeholder approaches or integrated food systems approaches that encompass multiple themes, players, values and problems a suitable way forward?
• How does the design and functioning of decision-making spaces impact delivery. What lessons can be learned to improve or hinder the efficacy of policy implementation?
• What kind of ‘smart’ forms of public and private governance can we distinguish that promote greater traceability and accountability in global agri-food supply chains?

Panel List

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Number 
Title 
 
P135Food Security, Transformation and Multi-Level Governance View Panel Details
P411The Politics and Practice of Resistance and Change in Food Policy View Panel Details
P436Trade and the Internationalisation of Food and Agricultural Policy View Panel Details
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"History is past politics, and politics is past history" - E.A. Freeman


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