|Title||Pursuing sustainability through multi-stakeholder collaboration: A description of the governance, actions, and perceived impacts of the roundtables for sustainable beef|
|Author(s)||Buckley, Kristy J.; Newton, Peter; Gibbs, Holly K.; McConnel, Ian; Ehrmann, John|
|Source||World Development 121 (2019). - ISSN 0305-750X - p. 203 - 217.|
|Department(s)||Forest and Nature Conservation Policy|
|Publication type||Refereed Article in a scientific journal|
|Keyword(s)||Beef - Cattle - Commodity - Multi-stakeholder - Roundtable - Sustainability|
Roundtables for sustainable beef have evolved in national contexts as well as at the global level as a multi-stakeholder process to address sustainability concerns in the cattle sector. However, due to their relatively recent inception, the literature on the beef roundtables is extremely limited and very little scholarly work has traced their process or impact. We used semi-structured interviews with key informants to examine the governance, actions, and potential impacts of the roundtables for sustainable beef, and identified opportunities and challenges for achieving greater sustainability impact. We found that the beef roundtables are in different stages of development and implementation and that they have diverse approaches based on their geographic contexts. However, they have universally adopted a model of sector-wide continuous improvement, in contrast to roundtables for other commodities, which have in many cases adopted formal certification programs. Activities by the roundtables for sustainable beef have variously included working towards definitions of sustainable beef; setting sustainability principles and criteria; and creating working groups to address specific aspects of sustainability (e.g., verification, deforestation). Our interviews identified opportunities to expand the roundtables’ roles, activities, and sustainability impacts. This study provides a benchmark of the roundtables’ efforts to date, and generates hypotheses and ideas for how they could evolve in the future.