Organizational Capacity and Global Competitiveness of Small-scale Coffee Farmers in Kenya

Organizational Capacity and Global Competitiveness of Small-scale Coffee Farmers in Kenya

Author: 
Robert Chiuri
Program of study: 
D.B.A.
Abstract: 
Small-scale coffee growing was prominent and had been viewed as a strategic resource and sound contributor to the socio-economic stability of coffee producers in the developing world, especially Kenya. Coffee industry activities offered an incomegenerating alternative-market strategy but with varying and significant impact on the farming, enterprise performance and community development. Though organizational capabilities, resources and compliance to standards had become crucial to the industry stakeholders and commodity value chain, they created various barriers to small-scale coffee growers towards their competitiveness. The purpose of this quantitative research study was to examine the relationship between organizational capacities and competitiveness of Kenya's small-scale coffee farmers. The study identified, offering quality extension training, farm management, linkages to coffee buyer markets and access to financial networks as among best practices model that build capacities of coffee farmers toward global competitiveness. The study findings and conclusions that included improving coffee farmer capability, strategic management, networking, governance and supply chain capacities were noted as significant to the coffee industry, value chain stakeholders and economies of developing countries, such as Kenya.This quantitative research study involved examining perceptions of over 100 East African small-scale coffee farmers and their Cooperative Society managers all based in Kenya. Finally, the study recommendations lead to improving private-public sector policy making and reforms, strengthening business competitiveness of coffee farmers, further research and contributing to the frontiers of knowledge on organizational capacity and performance.
Acknowledgements: 
Many people and institutions made the completion of this dissertation possible. I am very grateful for all the support I received through my doctoral program at the University of Phoenix, School of Advanced Studies. My greatest thanks and appreciation go to Dr. Michael T. Taku, my dissertation committee chair. He mentored me through my doctoral program and was very generous with his time, knowledge and professionalism. Dr. Taku was involved as a Coinvestigator of my dissertation study, read several drafts of this dissertation and always provided his feedback in a timely fashion despite numerous administrative tasks and project engagements. He offered invaluable comments and suggestions at each stage of this dissertation that contributed to the completion of this work. I also thank Dr. Catherine Berry, Dr. Sushil Jindal and Dr. Lynne Patten for their availability and guidance as members of my dissertation committee. I should also mention the valuable support of Dr. Skelton and Dr. Chris Robert who, during the early stages of this project, provided me with invaluable editorial support, advice on the format of the dissertation, objectives of the research and in the clarification of the research design of this dissertation study. I am also greatly indebted to various professors and instructors since the fall of 2009 that contributed immensely in providing the fundamental knowledge and support that propelled me towards the development of my dissertation proposal and understanding the importance of maintaining the Scholar-LeaderPractitioner Model that has now become a strong key pillar of my lifelong work. I would like also to thank Mr. Humphrey Wafula of Kenya Coffee Producers Association, who together with his office staff, other coffee sector organizations and Cooperative Society leaders facilitated the survey instrument to hundreds of small-scale coffee farmers in coffee growing regions of Kenya. I would like to recognize Jennifer Dessert for her tireless and prompt effort in editing this dissertation Manuscript. I am deeply thankful to the love, prayers and unconditional support of my wife Ruth Wanjiru Wachira. My wife was an exceptional companion during the challenging years of my doctoral program. I would also like to express my thanks and gratitude to my children, Chris, Michael, Jessica, Raphael and last born Rachel for the patience, understanding and strong fortitude during this period. My exceptional debt to my mother, family members and friends for moral and spiritual support during this educational journey. I dedicate this work to my entire family and persons of goodwill. God Bless you all. In presenting this dissertation as a partial fulfillment of the requirements for a doctoral degree from University of Phoenix, I agree that the Library of the University shall make it available for inspection and circulation in accordance with its regulations governing materials of this type. I agree that permission to quote from, to copy from, or publish this dissertation may be granted by the author or, in his/her absence, the professor under whose direction it was written or, in his absence, by the Dean of the School of Advanced Studies, UOPX. Such quoting, copying, or publishing must be solely for the scholarly purposes and does not involve potential financial gain. It is understood that any copying from or publication of this dissertation which involves potential gain will not be allowed without written permission of the author. All dissertations deposited in the University of Phoenix Library must be used only in accordance with the stipulations prescribed by the author in the preceding statement.