Civil Society and Social Movements in Food System Governance – Now Available and Open Access!

FLEdGE is excited to announce the release of an edited collection that emerged out of our International Working Group on Innovative Governance. Civil Society and Social Movements in Food System Governance is an open-access edition that examines and compares a variety of governance innovations, at a range of scales. Most of the chapters in this volume were first presented in a workshop held in conjunction with a FLEdGE meeting in September 2017.

Download full book for free here: https://doi.org/10.4324/9780429503597

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Editors

Peter Andrée is Associate Professor in Political Science, Geography and Environmental Studies at the Institute of Political Economy at Carleton University, Canada.

Jill K. Clark is Associate Professor at the John Glenn College of Public Affairs at Ohio State University, USA.

Charles Z. Levkoe is Canada Research Chair in Sustainable Food Systems and Assistant Professor in the Department of Health Sciences, Lakehead University, Canada.

Kristen Lowitt is Assistant Professor in the Department of Geography, Brandon University, Canada.

About the book

Change is needed in our food system.  As global food systems face multiple threats and challenges there is an opportunity for social movements and civil society organizations to play a more active role in building social justice and ecological sustainability. Beyond developing place-based initiatives, many of these groups have worked to scale-up their activities to address broader policy and play a meaningful role in food systems governance. 

Drawing on case studies from Canada, the United States, Europe, and New Zealand, this open-access edited collection showcases promising ways forward for civil society actors to engage in governance. The authors address topics including: 

  • The variety of forms that governance engagement takes from multi-stakeholderism to co-governance to polycentrism/self-governance; 
  • The values and power dynamics that underpin these different types of governance processes; effective approaches for achieving desired values and goals; and
  • The broader relationships and networks that may be activated to support change. 

By examining and comparing a variety of governance innovations, at a range of scales, this book offers insights for those considering contemporary food systems and their ongoing transformation.

Key findings

1) Food movements are increasingly engaging in governance to have a wider and more systemic impact.
2) Food movements engage in governance at a variety of scales, though there is an emphasis on the local scale.
3) The variety of forms that governance engagement takes can be placed along a continuum, from multi-stakeholderism to co-governance to polycentrism/self-governance.
4) Building relationships with other actors based on mutual trust and commitment is central to achieving change.

Recommendations for policy, practice, and research

  • Food is an important lever for social, economic, and ecological change
  • Food movements should be understood as diverse, with different goals and strategies 
  • The realm of co-governance between government and movement actors will likely become more important as food movements claim larger roles in decision-making 

Citation

Andrée, P. (Ed.), Clark, J. (Ed.), Levkoe, C. (Ed.), Lowitt, K. (Ed.). (2019). Civil Society and Social Movements in Food System Governance. London: Routledge, https://doi.org/10.4324/9780429503597

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