While having a history of authoritarian styles of governance (Keeley & Scoones 2000), Ethiopia has recently seen the attempt to establish more collaborative styles of governance bodies to govern the seed sector. Over the last years these bodies have been initiated from below on regional as well as national level. As seed provides a means for the federal government to remain close ties with farmers, the bodies are faced with the constraining difficulties of seed being a political commodity (Hassena 2017). The bodies are thus striving for power and legitimacy. This research aims to provide insight in the role of power in these collaborative governance arenas situated in Ethiopia’s authoritarian regime. It aims to clarify how power strategies were recognized, accepted, contested or responded to by other actors in this strategic power game.
Sanne’s background is in anthropology and previously she conducted a seed law study for the Integrated Seed Sector Development program in which she compared seed legislation of 35 countries in Africa to clarify their potential effect on smallholder farmers and farmer-led seed systems.