Modernising the Kenyan Dairy Sector?

C.J. Rademaker, H. Jochemsen, S.J. Oosting

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference paper


The track record of livestock development interventions in promoting sustained poverty reduction is believed to be meagre. Could it be that the track record of livestock development interventions is so meagre because of the influence of a reductionistic worldview? The Cartesian worldview has been extremely influential in Western culture and broader. Central in this worldview is a thinking in terms of traditional versus modern and subject(ive) versus object(ive). It has been argued that in development cooperation this has given rise to projectivistic thinking and acting where reality, including the realities of farmers and others, is only meaningless material, to be freely given shape based on a rational design. This is accompanied by an attitude in which our by and large individualistic Western society with its (presumed) institutional mechanicism – such as the market mechanism – is seen to be the model for other societies as well. Finally, we can note a marginalisation of religion and worldview in the public debate. The aim of this contribution is thereforeto analyse in a qualitative way whether such traces of the Cartesian worldview can be linked to development programmes’ successes or failures in achieving impact. To this end, a set of eight impact evaluations of dairy development interventions in Kenya are considered, spanning the period 2007-2014. We (1) analyse what positive and negative effects – as emerging from the evaluation documents – have resulted from these interventions; (2) normatively reflect on what the evaluation documents posit as positive and negative effects; (3) analyse whether we can speak of a significant influence of the Cartesian worldview in such interventions; and (3) establish whether there is a relationship between the degree to which projects and programs embody a Cartesian worldview and their respective success or failure. Even though results are not available yet, and the relationship between the influence of a Cartesian worldview and a project or program’s success is hypothetical, we at least expect to provide a typology of positive and negative effects of Kenyan dairy development interventions, and be able to show to which degree projects and programs are influenced by the Cartesian worldview.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProfessionals in Food Chains
Subtitle of host publicationEthics, Roles and Responsibilities, proceedings of the EURSAFE2018 conference
EditorsSvenja Springer, Herwig Grimm
PublisherWageningen Academic Publishers
ISBN (Electronic)9789086868698
ISBN (Print)9789086863211
Publication statusPublished - 18 Jun 2018
EventEURSAFE2018 - Wageningen, Netherlands
Duration: 13 Jun 201816 Jun 2018



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