Social Sustainability, Power and Agriculture Value Chains:

An intersectional analysis of the everyday notions, politics and dynamics of interaction of smallholders in the vanilla value chain of NE Madagascar

Agriculture Value chains are believed to have transformative potential for rural communities. It promises better market integration, sustainable use of land and escape from poverty. However, these positive benefits are not automatic, given that value chains also carry with them major equity issues, and distributional effects. Using the case of smallholders in the vanilla value chain (VVC) of NE Madagascar, this study ask whether the current ‘modus operandi’ in the VVC influence power relations between and among actor groups in the value chain. I use Constructive Grounded Theory (CGT) to account for the methodological imperatives of doing S o c i a l Sustainability Research (SSR), and the moral and practical implications of doing power analysis. The study enriches the theoretical understanding of the complex power processes within potentially transformative agriculture value chains. By merging feminist theoretical and methodological perspectives of intersectionality and CGT with SSR, the study advances a broader conceptualization of power.