Assessing the efficacy of transition theory to identify industry transformation

A case study examining the deregulation of Australia's dairy industry

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1 Citation (Scopus)

Abstract

Transformation is a key concept in social-ecological systems research, and transition theory in particular; however, the essential elements of a transformation are yet to be clearly articulated. This article explores the changes that took place when Australian governments deliberately set out to restructure the Australian dairy industry. Using the subtropical dairy industry as a case study, we conducted semi-structured interviews with industry stakeholders. Our analysis was structured around transition concepts thus testing the framework's efficacy. We found that deregulation substantially altered the culture of the industry and the structure and working practices of the production system, supply chain, industry organisations and government agencies. Transition theory and its concepts provided a useful framework to explain how systemic change transformed the industry. Transition theory identified the multi-scalar nature of the interactions between structure and practice and the social and power relationships that reinforced change.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)113-129
Number of pages17
JournalAustralian Geographer
Volume46
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2015

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deregulation
industry
production system
stakeholder
ecological system
systems research
government agency
social system
dairy industry
supply
interaction
interview

Cite this

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title = "Assessing the efficacy of transition theory to identify industry transformation: A case study examining the deregulation of Australia's dairy industry",
abstract = "Transformation is a key concept in social-ecological systems research, and transition theory in particular; however, the essential elements of a transformation are yet to be clearly articulated. This article explores the changes that took place when Australian governments deliberately set out to restructure the Australian dairy industry. Using the subtropical dairy industry as a case study, we conducted semi-structured interviews with industry stakeholders. Our analysis was structured around transition concepts thus testing the framework's efficacy. We found that deregulation substantially altered the culture of the industry and the structure and working practices of the production system, supply chain, industry organisations and government agencies. Transition theory and its concepts provided a useful framework to explain how systemic change transformed the industry. Transition theory identified the multi-scalar nature of the interactions between structure and practice and the social and power relationships that reinforced change.",
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AB - Transformation is a key concept in social-ecological systems research, and transition theory in particular; however, the essential elements of a transformation are yet to be clearly articulated. This article explores the changes that took place when Australian governments deliberately set out to restructure the Australian dairy industry. Using the subtropical dairy industry as a case study, we conducted semi-structured interviews with industry stakeholders. Our analysis was structured around transition concepts thus testing the framework's efficacy. We found that deregulation substantially altered the culture of the industry and the structure and working practices of the production system, supply chain, industry organisations and government agencies. Transition theory and its concepts provided a useful framework to explain how systemic change transformed the industry. Transition theory identified the multi-scalar nature of the interactions between structure and practice and the social and power relationships that reinforced change.

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