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Conference papers

Participation in the ISEAL Alliance: Field testing as a process of intermediation

Abstract : Social and environmental standards development organizations (SDOs) have been collaborating together within the ISEAL Alliance to construct ‘meta-standards'. These exercises in standards-setting are part of a longer-term process of transitioning innovative approaches to sustainable agriculture from diverse niches such as organic, fair trade and forest stewardship into a regime of certified sustainability. We see a role for the activities of intermediation in socio-technical transitions where we envision intermediation as a process of ‘accompanying change’. Using participant observation during the development of the Assurance Code within the ISEAL Alliance, we reflect upon the usefulness of this concept in understanding multi-stakeholder initiatives. We analyze the field testing activity based on salient issues, methodological approaches, and the relationship between stakeholders’ standards and the ISEAL meta-standards. Through our analysis we reflect upon the dynamic nature of intermediation as a participatory and representative activity. We suggest that this notion of intermediation might be usefully linked to studying sustainability transitions in a more consistent framework that links socio-technical dimensions of standards and socio-political dimensions of knowledge regimes.
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Submitted on : Saturday, June 6, 2020 - 4:55:53 AM
Last modification on : Sunday, August 16, 2020 - 1:06:06 PM


  • HAL Id : hal-02808114, version 1
  • PRODINRA : 270491



Allison Marie Loconto, Marc Barbier. Participation in the ISEAL Alliance: Field testing as a process of intermediation. International Workshop: Governance of Sustainable Agriculture through Multi-Stakeholder Initiatives, Centre de Coopération Internationale en Recherche Agronomique pour le Développement (CIRAD). FRA., Dec 2012, Montpellier, France. ⟨hal-02808114⟩



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