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Certification process of international standards in the Kenyan cut flower industry
Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Human Geography.
2011 (English)Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (Two Years)), 20 credits / 30 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

This thesis examines if auditors, managers and workers see certification and auditing as tools to improve working conditions in the Kenyan cut flower industry. It scrutinizes if mentioned stakeholders think that certification has been effective, since the state of working conditions of the industry were brought to attention in 2002 by academics and non-governmental organizations. The study further examines what different stakeholders see as challenges with the certification process as well as with the auditing process.

The theoretical framework for the study consists of several theories from previous studies, including Gereffi’s buyer-driven value chain and Barrientos and Smith’s distinction between outcome standards and process rights. The study is partly a literature review but focus of the study is on the findings from ten semi-structured interviews.

Among the stakeholder groups there was not one commonly expressed understanding on if certification and auditing had improved the working conditions. All three stakeholders emphasized some positive changes because of certification although they saw remaining challenges with for example freedom of association and increasing the level of wages to becoming living wages. The main findings in the study support Barrientos and Smith’s distinction and certification and auditing are argued not to be effective tools alone to reach improvements in the industry.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Keyword [en]
Cut flower, Certification, Labor rights, Kenya, Fairtrade, Audit, Living wages.
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-58371OAI: diva2:420344
Social and Behavioural Science, Law
Available from: 2011-08-18 Created: 2011-06-01 Last updated: 2011-08-18Bibliographically approved

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