The question of land and its strategic, socio-political and agricultural relevance within the Israeli-Palestinian conflict must be understood against the background of the dominant position of Israel as occupational power, heavily affecting the access to, and the control over natural resources. The subjects discussed within this article are intrinsically linked via the usage of the food regime approach as analytical tool, and the article’s specific focus on land. An attempt is made to grasp the neoliberal restructuring of Palestine and its developments in the agricultural sector, paying particular attention to land grabbing. Neoliberalism aided the institutionalising and normalising of accumulation by dispossession in the occupied Palestinian territories (oPt), these being identified as a key feature of the corporate food regime, and leading to the marginalisation of rural communities and to depeasantisation. The crises of the food regime spurred food sovereignty movements all around the globe. While analysing the political demands and approaches of the concept of food sovereignty centered around natural resources, this article also explores why the concept offers various ideas for an alternative development in Palestine. This paper tries to show how specific dynamics observed by the food regime analytics can be helpful in contextualising developments within the oPt – ranging from neoliberal restructuring to the emergence of food sovereignty.
Al-Botmeh, Samia (2010): Gender Differentials in the Palestinian Labour Market and the Role of the International Community – a Critical Assessment. In: Seewald, Magda (ed.): Perspectives Beyond War and Crisis II – Food Aid, Poverty Administration and Development Policy in the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict. Vienna: VIDC, 53-73.
Dana, Tariq (2014): A Resistance Economy: What is it and can it provide an alternative? Rosa Luxemburg Stiftung Regional Office Palestine. http://www.rosaluxemburg.ps/?publication=a-resistance-economy-what-is-it-and-can-it-provide-an-alternative, 20.02.2018.
El Zein, Rayya (2017): Developing a Palestinian Resistance Economy through Agricultural Labor. In: Journal of Palestine Studies 46(3), 7-26. https://doi.org/10.1525/jps.2017.46.3.7
Hammami, Rema (2006): Palestinian NGOs Since Oslo: From NGO Politics to Social Movements? Middle East Report 214(18), 16-19.
Hanafi, Sari/Tabar, Linda (2005): The Emergence of a Palestinian Globalized Elite: Donors, International Organizations and Local NGOs. Jerusalem: Institute of Jerusalem Studies.
Hanieh, Adam (2013): Lineages of Revolt: Issues of Contemporary Capitalism in the Middle East. Chicago: Haymarket Books.
Hever, Shir (2010): The Political Economy of Israel’s Occupation: Repression Beyond Exploitation. London: Pluto Press.
Hilal, Jamil/Al Kafri, Saleh/Kuttab, Eileen (2008): Unprotected Employment in the West Bank and Gaza Strip: A Gender Equality and Workers' Rights Perspective. ILO-Report. http://www.ilo.org/gender/Informationresources/WCMS_097715/lang--en/index.htm, 28.02.2018.
ILO – International Labour Organization (2014): Findings of the Assessment of Agricultural Cooperatives in West Bank: Challenges and Opportunities. http://www.ilo.org/global/topics/cooperatives/publications/WCMS_566377/lang--en/index.htm, 20.02.2018.
Jad, Islah (2008): Palestinian Women’s Movement – From Active Militants to Stateless Citizens. In: Farsakh, Leila (ed.): Special Focus: Commemorating the Nasksa, Evoking the Nakba. The MIT Electronic Journal of Middle East Studies. Wiesbaden: Springer, 94-112.
Khan, Mushtaq Husain (2004): Evaluating the Emerging Palestinian State: ‘Good Governance versus ‘Transformation Potential’. In: Khan, Mushtaq Husain/Giacaman, George/Amundsen, Inge (Hrsg.): State Formation in Palestine: Viability and Governance during a Social Transformation. Abingdon/New York, 13-63.
Krieger, Helmut (2015): Umkämpfte Staatlichkeit. Palästina zwischen Besatzung, Entwicklung und politischen Islam. Wiesbaden: Springer VS.
Kuttab, Eileen (2006): The Paradox of Women’s Work: Coping, Crisis, and Family Survival. In: Taraki, Lisa (ed.): Living Palestine, Family Survival, Resistance, and Mobility under Occupation. USA: Syracuse University Press.
Kuttab, Eileen (2010): Empowerment as Resistance: Conceptualizing Palestinian Women's Empowerment. In: Development. Society for International Development 53(2), 247-253. https://doi.org/10.1057/dev.2010.22
OCHAoPt – United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs-occupied Palestinian territory (2016): Gaza two years on. https://www.ochaopt.org/pages/gaza-two-years-on, 9.03.2018.
Rosa Luxemburg Stiftung/Center for Development Studies (2015, ed.): Critical Readings of Development under Colonialism. Towards a Political Economy of Liberation in the Occupied Palestinian Territories. Palestine: Rosa Luxemburg Stiftung.
Tabar, Linda (2015): People’s Power: Lessons from the First Intifada. In: Rosa Luxemburg Stiftung/Center for Development Studies (ed.): Critical Readings of Development under Colonialism. Towards a Political Economy of Liberation in the Occupied Palestinian Territories. Palestine: Rosa Luxemburg Stiftung, 135-169.
UNCTAD – United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (2015): The Besieged Palestinian Agricultural Sector. New York and Geneva.
WFP et al. – World Food Programme (2013): Socio-Economic and Food Security Survey. West Bank and Gaza Strip, 2012. https://www.wfp.org/content/state-palestine-socio-economic-food-security-survey-2012-august-2013, 20.02.2018.
In his book Victims of Development, Jeremy Seabrook analyses and criticises the impact of development on local populations, which brought to mind the Palestinian development conditions and prompted this important contextual and methodical study of Palestinian cooperatives as alternative methods of development that arose within the context of living under global colonial conditions. Several controversial questions came out of this study of cooperatives. The most crucial issues in the debate are whether to surrender to that reality and de facto context, or attempt to change it; to become captive to consumerism or redeem production that is based on experience and expertise, and whether to give in to individualism that undermines self-reliance or revert to productive collective action. The study also raises the critical question of whether to accept the loss of local experiences and valuable initiatives instead of moving into the path of empowerment and change. These are the actualities and alternatives for change revealed through the methodological conceptual approach of this study within a critical reading of the experience of cooperatives in a colonial context.
Abag Sam, Radzak/Abubakar Sam, Solayha (2013): Farmers’ Cooperatives in the Conflict Ridden Areas: The Maguindanao, Southern Philippines Experience. In: Journal of Social Science for Policy Implications 1 (2), 15-24.
AbdulMajeed, Ayman/Alsakka, Abaher (2014): A guide to Applied Field Research in the Occupied Palestinian Territories. Birzeit: Birzeit University Center for Development Studies.
Al-Ghol, Omar Helmi (1990): Intifada, December Revolution: Accomplishments and Horizons. Nicosia: Eibal Institute for Studies and Publications. (Arabic)
Audebrand, Luc/Claire Malo, Marie (2014): ... And Philosophy for All. A Multi-Stakeholder Co-operative’s Quest to Disseminate the Practice of Communities of Inquiry. In: Journal of Cooperative Studies 47 (1), 9-24.
Birks, Melanie/Mills, Jane (2015): Grounded Theory. A Practical Guide. London: Sage.
Borda-Rodriguez, Alexander/Vicari, Sara (2014): Rural co-operative resilience: The case of Malawi. In: Journal of Cooperative Organisation and Management (2), 43-52. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jcom.2014.03.002
Cardona, Mario (2017): Learning In, From and For Co-operative Life in Rural Malta: Two Case Studies. In: Journal of Co-operative Studies 50 (1), 5-16.
Chambers, Robert (1983): Putting the Last First. New York: Longman.
Communiqué of the National Unified Leadership (1988-1990): Intifada statements series 1-35. http://awraq.birzeit.edu/, 10.04.2018.
Daqqaq, Ibrahim (1989): Self-Effort Development: Strategy for Survival. In: George Al-Abed (ed.): The Palestinian Economy: Development Challenges Under Protracted Occupation. Beirut: Center for Arab Union Studies, 291-321. (Arabic)
Haddad, Toufic (2013): Neoliberalism and Palestinian Development: Assessment and Alternatives. Book, Critical Readings of Development under Colonialism: Towards a Political Economy for Liberation in the Occupied Palestinian Territories. Birzeit: Birzeit University Center for Development Studies.
Hamed, Muhannad (2012): Policies for activating the Palestinian cooperative movement. Ramallah: MAS. (Arabic)
Hanieh, Adam (2013): Development as a tool for struggle: countering the reality of hegemony in Palestine. In: Rosa Luxemburg Stiftung/Center of Development Studies (eds.): Critical Readings of Development under Colonialism: Towards a Political Economy for Liberation in the Occupied Palestinian Territories. Birzeit: Birzeit University Center for Development Studies
Herbel, Denis/Rocchigiani, Mariagrazia/Ferrier, Christine (2015): The Role of the Social and Organizational Capital in Agricultural Cooperatives’ Development, Practical Lessons from the CUMA movement. In: Journal of Co-operative Organization and Management (3), 24-31. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jcom.2015.02.003
International Labor Organization (ILO) (2014): Diagnosis of Agricultural Cooperatives in the West Bank - Challenges and Opportunities. Beirut: ILO Regional office.
Makhoul, Basem (2012): The Economic and Social Role of Cooperative Societies in the West Bank: Analytical Study. Ramallah: Ministry of Labor, General Directorate of Cooperation. (Arabic)
Masrouji. Fathi (2015): Reform and Development of the Palestinian Cooperative Sector. Ramallah: MAS. (Arabic)
Ministry of Labor (2012): A brief statistical data and report on the cooperative sector. Ramallah: Ministry of Labor. (Arabic)
Ministry of Labor (2016): General Directorate of Coop: Annual Report. http://www.mol.pna.ps/swstatic-190509013115/swstatic-210917114910/images/tawan/rep-coop-2015.pdf , 10.04.2018. (Arabic)
Oczkowski,Edward/Krivokapic, Branka/Plummer, Kay (2013): The Meaning, Importance and Practice of Cooperative Principles: Qualitative Evidence from the Australian Cooperative Sector. In: Journal of Cooperative Organization and Management (1), 54-63. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jcom.2013.10.006
Orabi, Abdul Kader (2007): Qualitative Methods in Social Sciences. Damascus: Dar Al-Fiker. (Arabic)
Puusa, Anu/Hokkila, Kirsi/Varis, Antti (2016): Individuality vs. communality. A new dual role of cooperatives? In: Journal of Cooperative Organization and Management (4), 22-30.
Roy, Sara (1987): The Gaza Strip: A Case of Economic De-Development. In: Journal of Palestine Studies 17 (1), 56-88. https://doi.org/10.2307/2536651
Salzmann, Philipp (forthcoming, 2018): A Food Regime Perspective on Palestine: Neoliberalism and the Question of Land and Food Sovereignty within the Context of Occupation. Journal für Entwicklungspolitik 34 (1).
Schwettmann, Jürgen (2014): Cooperatives in Africa: Success and Challenges. Geneva: International Labour Office.
Seabrook, Jeremy (1993): Victims of Development: Resistance and Alternatives. London: Verso Books.
Sen, Amartya (1999): Development as freedom. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Somerville, Peter (2007): Cooperative Identity. In: Journal of Cooperative Studies 40 (1), 5-17.
Srouji, Fathi (2015): Reforming the Cooperatives Sector in Palestine. Ramallah: Economic Policy Research Institute (MAS).
Szabó, Gábor (2006): Cooperative Identity: A Theoretical Concept for Economic Analysis of Practical Cooperation Dynamics. In: Studies in Agricultural Economics 105, 5-22.
Tabar, Linda (2013): People’s Power: Lessons from the First Intifada. Book, Critical Readings of Development under Colonialism: Towards a Political Economy for Liberation in the Occupied Palestinian Territories. Birzeit: Birzeit University Center for Development Studies.
UN – United Nations (2012): International Co-operative Alliance Statement on the Co-operative Identity. http://www.un.org/ar/events/coopsyear/about.shtml, 10.04.2018.
agricultural cooperatives, roots of change, alternative methods of development, colonialism, culture of change
This article is a critical reflection on, and contextualisation of, the Palestinian ‘de-development’ process over the last 50 years of Israeli settler-colonial occupation. It also highlights the Palestinian Authority’s neo-liberal economic practice of structural adjustment post Oslo, that resulted in weakening the resistance economy and community development initiatives, while blocking any opportunity for steadfastness and self-reliance. It presents local community responses in a historical and gender perspective. Kuttab re-examines and re-visits ‘alternative development’ as a concept and paradigm through a case study of the women's cooperative ‘Our Production is Our Pride’, which endorsed principles of resistance, steadfastness, independence and liberation.
Abed, George (1988): The Palestinian Economy Under Prolonged Occupation. London: Routledge.
Al-Marsad – Arab Human Rights Centre in Golan Heights (2016): Monitor for Social and Economic Policies: Palestinian Tax System. Ramallah, Palestine.
Al-Marsad – Arab Human Rights Centre in Golan Heights (2017): Monitor for Social and Economic Policies: System for Social Protection. Ramallah, Palestine.
AWC – Agricultural Relief Committee (1993): Household Economy. Report on Seven Villages. Ramallah, West Bank.
AWC – Agricultural Relief Committee (1994): Evaluation Report on the Women's Unit. Ramallah, West Bank.
Dakkak, Ibrahim (1988): Development from Within: A Strategy for Survival. In: Abed, George T. (ed.): The Palestinian Economy: Studies in Development under Prolonged Occupation. London: Routledge.
Hamdan, Ayat/Hilal, Mustafa (2014): Industrial Zone in Jalama: Sacrifice of Agricultural Land versus Promise to solve unemployment. Ramallah: Bisan.
Hanieh, Adam (2008): Palestine in the Middle East: Opposing Neoliberalism and US Power. In: MRZine, https://mronline.org/2008/07/19/palestine-in-the-middle-east-opposing-neoliberalism-and-us-powerpart-1/, 19 July 2008.
Hanieh, Adam (2013): Palestine: The Oslo illusion, 20 years later. In: International Journal of Socialist Renewal. http://links.org.au/node/3376, 13 March 2018.
Hilal, Jamil/Kafri Saleh Al/Kuttab, Eileen (2008): Unprotected Employment in the West Bank and Gaza Strip: Gender Equality and Workers’ Rights Perspective. ILO-Report. Beirut: ILO Regional Office for Arab States.
Ina'sh Al Usra (1976): Outline of Principles. Annual Report. Ramallah.
IWS – Institute of Women Studies (2008): The Impacts of Israeli Mobility Restrictions and violence on gender relations in Palestinian Society: 2000-2007. Birzeit, West Bank: Institute of Women’s Studies, Birzeit University.
Jaber, Firas/Hamdan, Ayat (2013): Assessing the Women’s Cooperatives. Ramallah: Bisan.
Jad, Islah (2000): Women and politics (in Arabic). Birzeit, West Bank: Institute of Women’s Studies, Birzeit University.
Kandiyoti, Denize (1996): Gendering the Middle East: Emerging Perspectives. New York: Syracuse University Press.
Kefaya, Najwa (1990): Income-generating Generating Policies: For Family's Welfare or Women's Empowerment? Case Study of Palestinian Refugees in the Occupied West Bank. Institute of Social Studies. The Hague: Master’s thesis.
Kuttab Eileen (1989): Community Development Under Occupation: An Alternative Strategy. In: Journal of Refugee Studies 2(1), 131-138. https://doi.org/10.1093/jrs/2.1.131
Kuttab, Eileen (1993): Palestinian Women in the “Intifada”: Fighting on Two Fronts. In: Arab Studies Quarterly 15 (2), 69-85.
Kuttab, Eileen (1995): Investing in Half the Population: A Critical Review of the World Bank's Plan for Emergency Assistance to the Occupied Territories. In: Gender and Society. Working Paper 2. Birzeit University: Women Studies Program.
Kuttab, Eileen (1997): Commentary: Fixed Paradigms, Changing Realities. Gender and Development in Palestine. In: Gender and Society, Working Paper 3. Birzeit University: Women Studies Program.
Kuttab, Eileen (2006): The Paradox of Women’s Work: Coping, Crisis, and Family Survival. In: Taraki, Lisa (ed.): Living Palestine, Family Survival, Resistance, and Mobility under Occupation. New York: Syracuse University Press.
Kuttab, Eileen (2008): Palestinian Women's Organizations: Global Cooption and Local Contradictions. In: Cultural Dynamics 20(2), 99-117. https://doi.org/10.1177/0921374008094283
Kuttab, Eileen (2010): Empowerment as Resistance: Conceptualizing Palestinian Women's Empowerment. In: Development 53(2), 247-253. https://doi.org/10.1057/dev.2010.22
OECD – Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (2014): QWIDS – Query Wizard for International Development Statistics. OECD Stad. http://stats.oecd.org/qwids/, 8 March 2018.
PA - Palestinian Authority (1999): Palestinian Development Plan 1999– 2003. Ramallah: Palestinian Authority.
PCBS - Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics (1999): Labour Force Survey: Main Findings. July-September 1999. Labour Force Survey Report 14. Ramallah: Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics.
Riyahi, Iyad (2010): New Economic Strategies: The Game of Precarious Poverty. Ramallah: Bisan.
Riyahi, Iyad/Jaber, Firas/Kuttab Eileen (2010): The Development Illusion: Critical Discourse Analysis on Palestinian Development. Ramallah: Bisan.
Roy, Sara (1995): The Gaza Strip: The Political Economy of De-Development. Washington, DC: Institute for Palestine Studies.
Sen, Amartya (1999): Development as Freedom. New York: Oxford University Press.
Taraki, Lisa (1991): The development of political consciousness among Palestinians in the occupied territories, 1967-1987. In: Nassar, Jamal Raji/Heacock, Roger (ed.): Intifada, Palestine at the Crossroads. New York: Praeger Publishers.
Taraki, Lisa (1997): Palestinian Society: Contemporary Realities and Trends. In: Palestinian Women. A Status Report. Birzeit University: Women's Studies Program.
Wolfe, Patrick (1999): Settler Colonialism and the Transformation of Anthropology: The Politics and Poetics of an Ethnographic Event. New York: Cassell.
World Bank (1993): Developing the Occupied Territories: An Investment in Peace. Washington: World Bank.
World Bank (2010): Checkpoints and Barriers: Searching for Livelihoods in the West Bank and Gaza Gender Dimensions of Economic Collapse. Report No 49699-GZ. Washington: World Bank.
settler colonialism, resistance economy, empowerment, alternative development, cooperatives, self-reliance
Abed, George T. (1989): The political economy of resistance in the occupied territories. Journal of Refugee Studies 2 (1), 55-63. https://doi.org/10.1093/jrs/2.1.55
Abu Kishk, Bakir (1988): Industrial development in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip. In: Abed, George T. (ed.): The Palestinian economy: Studies in development under prolonged occupation. London: Routledge.
Al-Botmeh, Samia (2013): The Palestinian development discourse and strategies for change in the West Bank. Birzeit: Centre for Development Studies-Birzeit University. (Arabic)
Awartani, Hisham (1988): Agricultural development and policies in the West Bank and Gaza. In: Abed, George T. (ed.): The Palestinian economy: Studies in development under prolonged occupation. London: Routledge.
Dakkak, Ibrahim (1988): Development from within: A strategy for survival. In: Abed, George T. (ed.): The Palestinian economy: Studies in development under prolonged occupation. London: Routledge.
Dana, Tariq (2014): A Resistance economy: What is it and can it provide an alternative? Rosa Luxemburg Foundation.
Dick, Harold (1988): Towards a strategy for development: Empowerment and entrepreneurship. In: Abed, George T. (ed.): The Palestinian economy: Studies in development under prolonged occupation. London: Routledge.
El Zein, Rayya (2017): Developing a Palestinian Resistance Economy through Agricultural Labor. In: Journal of Palestine Studies 46(3), 7-26. https://doi.org/10.1525/jps.2017.46.3.7
Farsakh, Leila (2016): Palestinian economic development: Paradigm shifts since the first Intifada. Journal of Palestine Studies 45(2), 55-71. https://doi.org/10.1525/jps.2016.45.2.55
Hanieh, Adam (2016): Development as struggle: Confronting the reality of power in Palestine. Journal of Palestine Studies, 45(4), 32-47. https://doi.org/10.1525/jps.2016.45.4.32
IFPO - Institut Français du Proche-Orient, An-Najah University (2015): Active citizens producing and consuming in a resistance economy today in Palestine. An-Najah University, Nablus. 8 December 2015.
Khalidi, Raja/Alsattari, Qossay (2014): Strengthening trade and economic interaction between Palestinians in the West Bank and inside Israel: An Arab “north-north” alternative to Israelization. Birzeit: Centre for Development Studies, Birzeit University.
Kurzom, George (2001): Towards alternative self-reliant agricultural development. Birzeit: Development Studies Programme (DSP), Birzeit University.
Mansour, Antoine (1983) : Palestine: Une économie de résistance en Cisjordanie et à Gaza. Paris: Editions l’Harmattan.
Marsad (2012): Fayyad wants to build a resistance economy. 18 April 2012. In: https://www.marsad.ps, 12 January 2018. (Arabic)
Mitchell, Timothy (2002): Rule of experts: Egypt, techno-politics, modernity. Berkeley: University of California Press.
Naquib, Fadle M. (2003): Towards conceptualizing a Palestinian development approach (Arabic). Ramallah: The Palestine Economic Policy Research Institute (MAS).
Piran, Shamseddin Jalili /Dorche, Mohammad Soleymani (2015): Resistance economy in international law. International Journal of Humanities and Cultural Studies December 2015, 646-653.
Rijke, Alexandra/van Teeffelen, Toine (2014): To exist is to resist: Sumud, heroism, and the everyday. In: Jerusalem Quarterly 59, 86-99.
Roy, Sara (1995): The Gaza Strip: The political economy of de-development. Washington D.C: Institute for Palestine Studies.
Samara, Adel/Shehadeh, Odeh (1988): Beyond De-linking: Development by Popular Protection (Arabic). Damascus: Dar Kanaan lil nashr.
Sayigh, Yusif A. (1991): Elusive development: From dependence to self-reliance in the Arab region. London: Routledge. https://doi.org/10.4324/9780203315897
Sayigh, Yusif A. (1993): Assistance to the Palestinian people – priorities and needs: The Palestinian position, seminar on assistance to the Palestinian people. UNESCO, 26-29 April.
Tabar, Linda (2015): People’s power: Lessons from the first Intifada. In: Center for Development Studies (ed.): Critical readings of development under colonialism: Towards a political economy for liberation in the Occupied Palestinian Territories. Birzeit: Birzeit University.
Tartir, Alaa (2015): Criminalising resistance, entrenching neoliberalism: The Fayyadist paradigm in the Occupied Palestinian West Bank. PhD thesis. London: London School of Economics and Political Science.
Tartir, Alaa/Bahour, Sam/Abdelnour, Samer (2012): Defeating dependency, creating a resistance economy. Al-Shabaka: The Palestinian Policy Network.
Tartir, Alaa/Sansour, Vivien (2014): Palestinian farmers: A last stronghold of resistance. Al-Shabaka: The Palestinian Policy Network.
Krieger, Helmut (2014): Umkämpfte Staatlichkeit. Palästina zwischen Besatzung, Entwicklung und politischen Islam. Wiesbaden: Springer VS.