Turkish olive and olive oil sectoral innovation system: a functional - structural analysis

Pehlivan Gürkan, Nilgün
The main purpose of this thesis is to explore problems that inhibit development of the olive and olive oil sector in Turkey. Olive productivity and olive oil product quality is low in Turkey compared to leader olive producing countries, Spain and Italy. Turkey is at the low end of the global olive oil value chain with high share of bulk olive oil exports and low share of high value added, branded exports. The competition in global markets is increasing and product standards are more stringent. Informal production, adulteration and low olive oil consumption are among the problems. The sector faces challenges specific to agricultural and food sectors, such as climate change. Tackling these challenges requires product, process and organizational innovations based on multidisciplinary knowledge. A holistic sectoral policy based on innovation system (IS) approach that target problems and enhance innovation is needed. According to IS approach,innovation is a result of interactive learning of sectoral actors, which is context specific and path dependent. In this study, coupled functional-structural analysis framework with IS perspective is used to identify barriers to innovation processes in olive and olive oil sector. Actors of olive and olive oil sectoral innovation system are defined. Current structural (actors, institutions, interactions and infrastructure) weaknesses, i.e. systemic problems that negatively affect functioning of the sector are identified. The analysis of systemic problems indicates the need for a sectoral policy in congruence with national, regional and technological policies of the government. Policy recommendations that target systemic problems are proposed accordingly.


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Citation Formats
N. Pehlivan Gürkan, “Turkish olive and olive oil sectoral innovation system: a functional - structural analysis,” Ph.D. - Doctoral Program, Middle East Technical University, 2015.