The governance of sustainable agriculture in New Zealand : a thesis presented in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Arts in Politics at Massey University, Manawatū, New Zealand

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The externalities associated with agriculture mean that a turn to sustainable farming practices by farmers is essential. However, those at the centre of such a turn have complex relationships to the structures of governance that regulate, order and control socio-economic life. Governance signals a shift to a wide range of governance mechanisms that are not anchored in the sovereign state and the mechanisms that regulate agriculture and the agrifood sector have changed significantly in recent years. This thesis [and briefly restate thesis question]. Drawing on two constructs from the theoretical and applied governance literature and the agrifood literature I examine farmer perceptions of hierarchy, the market and networks and the spatial locations of these new forms of governance in regard to biological farming practices. I conclude by arguing that there is a strong case for considering governance as the new way in which agriculture is regulated, controlled and influenced. At the forefront of this devolution of power away from central government is market-based regulation and control. The implications of such restructuring for the proliferation of sustainable agricultural practices means the strengthening of market instruments is needed to bolster sustainable farming. Furthermore, funding by central government is considered necessary by farmers in order to establish a strong case for the success of sustainable farming practices.
Sustainable agriculture, Government policy, Agriculture and state, New Zealand, Research Subject Categories::FORESTRY, AGRICULTURAL SCIENCES and LANDSCAPE PLANNING::Area economics::Agricultural economics