Craft and control : Networks, strategies and ordering in New Zealand beekeeping
Degree GrantorUniversity of Canterbury
Degree NameMaster of Arts
The thesis documents the strategies of participants presently composing' the New Zealand beekeeping 'industry'. It locates the different ways in which the participants engage in and across fora constituting the National Beekeepers' Association (the NBA), and have differential access to information and resources. It is argued that their engagement in struggles over control of national strategies in beekeeping are represented in the form of shifting interests and multiple capacities fostered by the current de-regulated environment. Organising the craft of beekeeping is, thus, conceived as a series of games between overlapping sets of participants. The presentation of the thesis allows for relations between participants to be traced across the different games, illuminating patterns in how they are representing themselves and understanding their respective work, and the ways in which their strategies intersect to reshape the NBA. The thesis also considers ways in which local idiosyncrasies of beekeeping environments produce regional variability. In turn, this variability in craft practice allows for the creation of innovative products based on local or regional properties, and has become a source of strength in the global marketplace. It is argued that regional scales of action, co-ordinated via regional Branches of the NBA, are likely to become more and more differentiated from national strategies implemented through the national body. These regional developments are facilitated by the emergence of information and communication technologies (ICTs) in beekeeping. The new technologies are presently effecting novel forms of interaction among certain participants sharing particular sets of skills. The thesis argues that rather than substituting for physical co-presence, ICTs are more likely to invigorate 'real' /regional settings and to re-affirm the value of face-to-face fora in beekeeping.