The political economy of food in developed economies

contested futures?

Research output: Contribution to conferenceAbstract


Is it reasonable to assume that different political economy contexts may have different futures of food? This comparative analysis proposes to explore how political economic variables impact upon and shape current and future food economies of selected developed countries. In view of the interplay between political systems and food systems, it subsequently attempts to imagine their respective futures.

Australia, the United Kingdom, and France present significant variations as well as similarities to allow for assessing how national political structures, modes of interest mediation and varieties of capitalism construct their respective present and future food economies. Central to this analysis is the question of whether market based instruments and mechanisms, so pivotal to liberal market economies, can be politically enduring as well as being able to deliver adequate social, environmental, and economically viable outcomes to the many challenges facing the national food economies. If markets fail to register environmental and social harm, is governmental intervention necessary to deliver the desirable outcomes? A typology of the researched food economies suggests distinct models, each following specific political and economic arrangements which tend to nurture particular patterns of operation.

The paper aims to shed light on the food situation in these selected high-income countries and asks how sustainable these food economies are in the face of pressing environmental challenges. This analysis aids our understanding of the situation at present by identifying the principles underpinning the respective national food security discourses and gleans insights into the contested future of food in these wealthy nations.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2013
EventFutures for Food - Turku, Finland
Duration: 6 Jun 20137 Jun 2013


ConferenceFutures for Food
Internet address


  • food capitalism
  • food policy
  • political economy of food

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