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Title: Empowerment through valuing women's unpaid care work? : an examination of an innovative fair trade and community trade pricing model in Nicaragua
Author: Butler, Felicity
ISNI:       0000 0004 8500 5133
Awarding Body: Royal Holloway, University of London
Current Institution: Royal Holloway, University of London
Date of Award: 2018
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This dissertation addresses a gap in the literature on gender and pricing strategies by exploring an innovative pricing model that acknowledges women's previously unpaid work in two Fair Trade supply chains (coffee and sesame) in Nicaragua. Minimum price guarantees have a strong potential for gender impact yet to date few gender-focused studies have examined this area (Smith, 2013). The pricing model studied in this research is structured as a premium and payments have been used for women's economic empowerment (WEE) projects. The argument for the premium is that the unpaid work, which is done mainly by women in the household and community, represents an important input into production and one that should be valued and remunerated. This dissertation critically evaluates whether recognizing women's unpaid work through the pricing model contributes to empowering women. The research takes a feminist social constructivist approach and mixed methods were employed. Data collection was carried out between May 2013 and January 2017 via semi-structured interviews, focus groups, household surveys and time use surveys. This research finds that WEE is not enough and needs to be linked to more holistic and political forms of empowerment, but further still, empowerment cannot happen without acknowledging the interplay of social norms and power. However, another finding shows that by recognizing the unpaid work of women, which has always been taken for granted, the inequality buried at a deeper level of the 'doxa' (Bourdieu, 1977) can begin to be challenged. The implications of these findings for research and practice is that it is not only essential to consider how social norms affect women's empowerment, but also how they shape formal and social structures that maintain inequality.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available