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Not only is multifunctionality regarded as an indispensable design feature of team‐based work, being multifunctional is allegedly beneficial for employees, and it is…
Not only is multifunctionality regarded as an indispensable design feature of team‐based work, being multifunctional is allegedly beneficial for employees, and it is presumed to increase job satisfaction and commitment. In this article we argue that multifunctionality also has its downsides and propose a framework in which multifunctionality is associated with ineffective utilisation of human resources. We incorporate examples from the empirical literature to depict sources of ineffective utilisation in teams. Depending on the managerial policies in force and the social dynamics within teams, multifunctionality can lead to both underutilisation of skills and overutilisation of capacity (task overload). By drawing on a range of literature, this article gives reason for more scepticism concerning the alleged universal benefits of multifunctionality, and suggests a framework as a starting point for further research.
Purpose – This chapter aims to explore the consequences of a renewed impetus for ‘neo-productivist’ agriculture on multifunctionality in Western Europe.…
Purpose – This chapter aims to explore the consequences of a renewed impetus for ‘neo-productivist’ agriculture on multifunctionality in Western Europe.
Design/methodology/approach – We analyse how the issue of multi-functionality has been interpreted and implemented in Western Europe through a comparison between Norway and Scotland (as an EU example). Relevant policy documents and literature are analysed. The chapter explores whether European agricultural multifunctionality is being revised in response to the rise of neo-liberal (neo-productivist) ideologies, food security and climate change issues.
Findings – Our results suggest that Norway and the European Union have developed somewhat different understandings of multifunctionality. In response to recent events these forms are diverging further with the EU strengthening and Norway weakening their respective policies and discourses. However, in both cases, food security and climate change are emerging as key elements in the restructuring of both policy and rhetoric.
Research limitations/implications and practical implications – The study has been limited to an overview of multifunctionality within the European context and a case study approach using Norway and Scotland. Nevertheless, in highlighting the flexible use of the notion of ‘multifunctionality’, it illustrates to policymakers the importance of maintaining a focus on its key environmental and social objectives in the face of pressures to increase production and liberalise agricultural policies.
Originality/value – This is one of the first studies to point out the varied nature of the ‘multifunctionality’ discourse in Europe and how it is likely to change further in response to economic, environmental and social changes.
The aim of the study is to analyse the value creation processes in multifunctional wineries. Specifically, the paper poses the following research questions: can the…
The aim of the study is to analyse the value creation processes in multifunctional wineries. Specifically, the paper poses the following research questions: can the creation of public goods (i.e. multifunctionality) open up new paths of value creation for wineries? And if so, can multifunctionality be only compensated through policy instruments? Or, is there a form of market compensation?
An empirical analysis was carried out on selected wineries that sell directly. The study implemented the “value portfolio” model that identifies specific variables, both internal and external to the farm, which contribute to the value creation. The methodology adopted is a structural equation modeling (SEM) approach that offers a theoretical basis for developing an understanding of the relationships between group of variables.
The empirical analysis confirms the assumptions developed. Indeed, the localized public goods generated by multifunctional farms can benefit from compensation on the market through the direct sale of products and services.
The study’s findings are quite innovative in the field of agricultural economics and open the way for interesting policy implications.
Purpose – The policy approach of multifunctionality – that agriculture has benefits beyond the production of food and fiber – has been debated within global trade…
Purpose – The policy approach of multifunctionality – that agriculture has benefits beyond the production of food and fiber – has been debated within global trade negotiations. Little is known about the perceptions of agriculture's multifunctional nature at the local level. These perceptions may be particularly pertinent in rural locations undergoing rapid transformations of the agricultural system, economic base, and related land uses. This chapter describes research conducted to examine the perceptions of agriculture's impact on local communities and the policy choices needed to support agriculture's multifunctionality.
Methodology – Six focus groups were conducted in Pennsylvania, USA. Counties were selected to represent three differentiated rural spaces (contested, clientelist, preserved), in which production and consumption interests claims vie for control of rural land. Participants represented both production and consumption interests, and described their perceptions of local agriculture and policy preferences.
Findings – Production and consumption interests across the study sites expressed views consonant with global discussions, in that agriculture provides significant positive impacts and few negative. However, locally specific issues related to taxes, land use planning, and farmland preservation dominated discussion. Participants supported a mix of policy tools (voluntary, regulatory, educational), but gave little credence to federal programs.
Research limitations/implications – Policy initiatives to support agricultural multifunctionality need to be sensitive to local conditions and create an enabling environment to allow multiple stakeholders opportunities to identify issues and preferred policy mechanisms.
Originality – Previous research has identified multifunctionality concepts at the global level; this chapter localizes multifunctionality, and examines potential hurdles to implementation.
From a contingency perspective and by using the principles of self‐organization described by Morgan (1986), this essay relates the amount of variety in transactions and transformations to the requisite of self‐organization. Self‐organization is defined in terms of the local autonomy to make decisions on both the transactions to be realized and the way transformation processes are organized to achieve these transactions. Appropriate Human resource management (HRM) systems and policies can help to achieve the level of self‐organization aimed at. When the amount of variety in transactions is relatively low, an organization can easily standardize and control work processes. In this case, there is no need to develop self‐organization. The focus of HRM will be on standardization, behavioral control systems and the social needs of workers. In the case of a moderate level of variety in transactions, management may obtain responsiveness by creating self‐organizing teams which have the local autonomy to deal with variety in customer demand. HRM instruments can help these teams by supporting integrated management, the multifunctionality of workers, team development, and the introduction of a skill‐based assessment and reward system. When the amount of variety becomes high, it is more effective to assign responsibilities to individuals and to apply HRM practices aimed at the problemsolving capacity of workers and the commitment of workers to the organization.
Neoliberal political ideologies have been criticised for their blanket prescription of market reform as the solution to almost any social or environmental problem. This…
Neoliberal political ideologies have been criticised for their blanket prescription of market reform as the solution to almost any social or environmental problem. This chapter thus examines the ability of market-based solutions to deal with the spatial and social diversity that characterises environmental problems in agriculture. In doing so, the chapter draws on case studies of the international fair trade movement and the regionalisation of natural resource management measures in Australia. Both these cases accept the neoliberal view that social and ecological degradation arises from the failure of markets to reflect the full cost of production, and seek, therefore, to achieve social and environmental objectives through the parallel pursuit of economic rationality. In Australia, voluntary planning and educational activities coordinated at a range of scales from the very local to the water catchment, encourage compliance with locally developed management plans and codes of practice that link the expression of private property rights with a ‘duty of care’ to the environment. In the process, landholders are re-defined as prudent and self-reliant businesspeople for whom sustainable resource management is an essential component of financial viability. Fair trade, by contrast, seeks to transfer social and environmental ‘duties of care’ through the entire fair-trade commodity chain. Auditing, certification and the payment of farm-gate price premiums enable Western consumers to become ‘partners’ in the economic and social development of small and marginalised farming communities; guaranteeing that the ‘fair price’ paid for commodities is reflected in the incomes and, importantly, expenditures of the people receiving them. Despite their differences, these cases are allied in their opposition to protectionist trade policies, their commitment to building the viability of farms as productive business units through exposure to ‘the market’, and their appeals to self-responsibility, empowerment and democratisation. And, ultimately, both fail, by themselves, to deal adequately with the spatial and social diversity that underlies agri-environmental processes and problems. Neither approach, it is suggested, should be abandoned. However, complementary processes of fair trade and bioregional planning are required if either are to achieve their maximum impact.
This chapter gives several explanations as to why peasant agriculture results in sturdy and sustainable growth – it also identifies the factors that undermine this…
This chapter gives several explanations as to why peasant agriculture results in sturdy and sustainable growth – it also identifies the factors that undermine this capacity. Peasant agriculture entails a constructive capacity: it includes mechanisms that are used to make agriculture grow and to face adverse conditions. And when the ‘normal’ level of resilience does not suffice, the constructive capacity is employed to redesign and materially rebuild agriculture through the development of new products, services and markets. This capacity leads to a new farmer’s empowerment that have in the multifunctionality the key to go beyond the classical agricultural system where the farming capacity is completely expressed out of the farm leaving farmers to do only mechanical operation. The chapter illustrates several examples of how farmers are reclaiming control over their own resources by defining a new level of farm autonomy and by oriented their farm towards multifunctional activities and the concept of peasants agriculture. The ‘new peasantry’ is consolidating itself and becoming a highly effective alternative: a viable way of addressing the multifaceted crisis that beleaguers farmers, the increasing strictures they face and the ongoing challenges of sustainability.
Which is the main characteristic of the French Mediterranean Agriculture (FMA)? The recognition of the multifunctionality of agriculture, supported by the institutions of…
Which is the main characteristic of the French Mediterranean Agriculture (FMA)? The recognition of the multifunctionality of agriculture, supported by the institutions of the territorial development? Or the development of social dumping considered as a necessity by many institutions of the sector? To answer this question the analysis is based on three main sources of data: agricultural statistics, monographs and administrative reports. The results show that the structural diversity is still important in the FMA. A significant proportion of the farms have based their economic strategy on making the most of the multifunctionality of agriculture. Some have built real success stories. But this development path cannot guarantee the viability of a large range of holdings: the number of farm holdings in FMA has decreased by 27% since 2000 and 57% since 1988. Due to the specificities of the Mediterranean productions, the cost of labour is still considered as a major adjustment variable to secure farm income in the region. Many situations are reported where the situation of casual labour is concerning, in particular for migrant workers. However, the working conditions of temporary migrant workers remain invisible and the image of the multifunctional agriculture is put forward as a marketing asset by all types of actors. This image is misleading. It makes invisible, issues that are essential for the future. Thus, it generates knowledge gaps and leads to the depoliticization of debates on the development models of agriculture in masking the contradictions and the conflicts of interest that they generate.
At the outset of this book, we argued that it was important that we study agricultural “policy regimes” rather than agricultural policy itself. Our reasoning was that our…
At the outset of this book, we argued that it was important that we study agricultural “policy regimes” rather than agricultural policy itself. Our reasoning was that our interest lies in the actual outcomes in terms of farming practice, industry arrangements, global trade linkages, technology assemblages, and agroecological relationships in particular countries and regions. It is a convenient fiction that these practices and arrangements are the direct result of the formal agricultural policy arrangements in each specific country. In reality, the formal policy process in each country (including not only agriculture, but also, in some cases, rural, environmental, trade, and social development policy) can be argued to be in constant interaction with wider global politics, geographically specific environmental and cultural dynamics, prevailing farm practices, and new technologies. To recognize this full assembly of dynamics that coordinate to determine actual farm practice, we use the term “policy regimes.” In neoliberalized economies such as New Zealand, there is even a strong sense in which devolved governance at the industry and sector level now operates within these regimes in the same way that formal agricultural policy does in European countries.
This chapter aims to analyse the evolution of competing paradigms and theoretical frameworks that have pervaded the debates on the present and future of agricultural and…
This chapter aims to analyse the evolution of competing paradigms and theoretical frameworks that have pervaded the debates on the present and future of agricultural and food systems and their associated rural areas. From this global overview, we will extract common features of paradigms that are being reproduced over time as well as highlight the innovations introduced. Particular attention will be paid to discuss the responses and contributions inspired by European Mediterranean-based research, setting up the framework that underlines the subsequent chapters of the volume.