Project Participants

Sustainability's Infrastructure: A novel ethnographic approach to the global value chain of certified tea (SUSTEIN)


SUSTEIN will focus on localized translations of transnational sustainability standards in Kenya, United Arab Emirates and corporate headquarters in Europe to advance our understanding of the global value chain of certified tea. Our theoretical aim is to go beyond the idea of global value chain by way of deploying the novel concept of infrastructure. This will allow us to better comprehend the recursive loops and contingent causes and effects in global value chains. SUSTEIN will answer these questions:A) How does certification shape agrarian production in the form of cultivation and factory processing? Who benefits from which sustainability standards? B) How does certification influence the valuation of tea, assessed in terms of taste, grade and price? How is the value of certification performed and capitalized? C) How do corporate professionals and independent auditors distinguish between "sustainable/unsustainable"? What lines of evidence are recognized?


Public (National)


Danmarks frie forskningsfond

Collaborative partners:

University of Copenhagen



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