An Examination of the Factors Impacting on the Farm Bargaining Intentions of Smallholder Women Farmers in the Eastern Gangetic Plains

PhD Thesis


Das, Dipika. 2022. An Examination of the Factors Impacting on the Farm Bargaining Intentions of Smallholder Women Farmers in the Eastern Gangetic Plains. PhD Thesis Doctor of Philosophy. University of Southern Queensland. https://doi.org/10.26192/q7q7q
Title

An Examination of the Factors Impacting on the Farm Bargaining Intentions of Smallholder Women Farmers in the Eastern Gangetic Plains

TypePhD Thesis
Authors
AuthorDas, Dipika
Supervisor
1. FirstProf Retha Wiesner
2. SecondProf Tek Maraseni
3. ThirdFraser Sugden
Institution of OriginUniversity of Southern Queensland
Qualification NameDoctor of Philosophy
Number of Pages346
Year2022
PublisherUniversity of Southern Queensland
Place of PublicationAustralia
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)https://doi.org/10.26192/q7q7q
Abstract

Various studies have confirmed that women smallholders have low farm bargaining power and that bargaining intention is a predictor of bargaining behaviour. However, this phenomenon has not been studied within the farm bargaining context. To fill this theoretical gap, the main objective of this research was to explore the factors influencing the bargaining intentions of women smallholder farmers in the Eastern Gangetic Plain region. The theoretical foundation of this research is the theory of planned behaviour, which argues that attitudes, behavioural norms and perceived behaviour control determine behaviour. Hence, three research questions were formulated to examine the impact of the three factors on the bargaining intentions of these women smallholder farmers. The philosophical research underpinnings of this study were relativism ontology and subjective epistemology. An interpretive paradigm was employed using a qualitative phenomenological approach and case study methodology. Data were collected by conducting in-depth interviews with 35 women smallholders in the Eastern Gangetic Plains (EGP) who signified the main focus of this study. To further inform the research, 17 interviews were conducted with the farmers' bargaining opponents in the region. The collected interview data were analysed using NVivo, a qualitative data analysis software package. A thematic analysis was employed to inform the research questions. Similar interview passages were combined into themes and within-theme differences were also examined to illuminate the results. Four farm bargaining spheres were evident, which consisted of multiple bargaining issues. Examining these spheres and bargaining issues enabled the identification of the bargaining attitudes, behavioural norms and perceived behavioural control of women farmers and the related impact on their intention to engage in farm bargaining. The findings revealed that this intention to engage in farm bargaining was embedded in power dynamics based on personal, product-related, sociocultural and institutional factors. These factors affected their attitudes, subjective norms and perceived behavioural control and consequently their farm bargaining intentions. Moreover, it was found that the theory of planned behaviour can indeed be effectively used to explore and explain the antecedents of women farmers' intentions to engage in farm bargaining. Thus, this study provides a new theoretical perspective on the practice of bargaining behaviour by women farmers in the EGP, using a framework it developed to examine farm bargaining behaviour. The study's practical contribution lies in its recommendations regarding the development and improvement of agricultural policies in the EGP. Adopting these recommendations would help ensure the sustainability and resilience of women farmers as well as enhance their welfare. The study's results led to the conclusion that 'power' was crucial in the formation of women farmers' bargaining intentions, which is in line with the findings in the literature. 'Power' is potentially the fourth influencer of bargaining intention in the TPB framework. The existing power dynamics showed unequal power relations between women farmers and their bargaining opponents, which strongly affected the farmers' bargaining intentions. In conclusion, the study demonstrated that women farmers' farm bargaining was embedded in the power dynamics based on personal, product-related, sociocultural and institutional factors, which affected their attitudes, subjective norms, perceived behavioural control and, ultimately, their farm bargaining intentions.

Keywordsbargaining behaviour, bargaining intention, women, smallholders, agriculture, farm bargaining, Eastern Gangetic Plains
ANZSRC Field of Research 2020350504. Industrial and employee relations
350503. Human resources management
Public Notes

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Byline AffiliationsSchool of Business
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