Social limitations of maize farmers' adaptation to neoliberal policy reform in Mexico

S.F. Groenewald, A. Niehof

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


This article highlights the interfaces between micro-level livelihoods, social networks, and macroeconomic trends and policies. Specifically, it analyzes the role of farmer groups in livelihood adaptation of smallholder maize producers in southern Mexico. We show how neoliberal market changes have shaped the local social structure with constraining and enabling effects on households’ ability to adapt, while in turn the outcomes of the neoliberal policy reforms are being (re)shaped by the responses of the farmers, thereby changing the structural context. We provide evidence for the heterogeneity of adaptation processes and show that farmers’ participation influences the outcomes of neoliberal policy reforms.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)197-218
JournalLatin American Research Review (LARR)
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2015


Cite this