Food Sovereignty, Post-Neoliberalism, Campesino Organizations and the State in Ecuador

01 January 2013

In Latin America the failure of neoliberal policies, and the popular mobilization of social movements against neoliberalism, led to the election of anti or post-neoliberal governments. This has opened up new political space for rural social movements to push for the institutionalization of food sovereignty in state policy.

This paper analyzes the theoretical and practical challenges underlying the institutionalization of food sovereignty by examining the case of Ecuador under the government of President Rafael Correa. I present a theoretical framework by which to analyze the potential of the state to scale-up food sovereignty principles, which includes elements such as state-society relations, the question of the developmental state and state-society synergy. I then apply this framework to the case of Ecuador, ultimately concluding that the current policies of the government do not largely reflect food sovereignty principles. I conclude with some reflections on the question of food sovereignty and the state in Ecuador and beyond.

Associated Researcher, Latin American Faculty of Social Sciences (FLACSOEcuador), Quito, Ecuador, and PhD candidate in political science, Carleton University, Ottawa, Canada. Patrick Clark is currently completing his doctoral research on the Ecuadorian government’s rural development policies and food sovereignty.

Food Sovereignty: a critical dialogue, 14 - 15 September, New Haven.