Janina Grabs, Stefano Ponte · 2019
Journal of Economic Geography

The evolution of power in the global coffee value chain and production network

The configurations of global value chains and production networks are constantly changing, leading to new trajectories and geographical distributions of value creation and capture. In this article, we offer a 40-year evolutionary perspective on power and governance in the global coffee value chain and production network. We identify three distinct phases that are characterized by different power dynamics, governance setups and distributional configurations. We find that the kinds of power exercised along the coffee chain have changed, but also that the underlying power inequities between Northern buyers and Southern producers have remained fundamentally unaltered.

Full publication is available on: DOI 10.1093/jeg/lbz008

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Stefano Ponte

Stefano Ponte
Copenhagen Business School

Stefano Ponte is a Professor of International Political Economy and Director of the Centre for Business and Development Studies at Copenhagen Business School. His research focuses on governance dynamics, and economic and environmental upgrading trajectories in global value chains — especially in developing countries and in Africa. He is particularly interested in how sustainability standards, labels and certifications shape agro-food value chains, and in how different forms of partnerships affect sustainability outcomes.

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