While policies and programmes aim to integrate small-scale rural producers into agricultural value chains, questions remain over how best to: recognise the possibly divergent visions, interests and constraints of different value chain actors; address often substantial power imbalances in value chains; and ultimately promote agency among rural producers and their communities – that is, their ability to choose, act and influence realities around them.
In an attempt to address these issues, in this webinar Dr. Lorenzo Cotula from the International Institute for Environment and Development (IIED) will present insights from the recently published research report Rural producer agency and agricultural value chains: What role for socio-legal empowerment? The report was prepared for the Empowering Producers in Commercial Agriculture (EPIC) project, which is funded by the UK Department for International Development and supports small-scale rural producers and their communities in Malawi and Nepal.
Drawing on the report’s review of trends in commercial agriculture and experience of supporting rural producers and communities, Dr Cotula will lead a discussion on approaches to enhance the agency of rural actors as they engage with, or are affected by, commercial agriculture.
Dr Cotula is a principal researcher on law and sustainable development at the IIED and is based in the United Kingdom. He leads research, policy engagement and field-level projects on natural resource governance and resource-based investments.