The scientific pluralism of agribusiness: A special issue on theory and practice

R. Wes Harrison, Desmond Ng

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


The term "agribusiness" first appeared in Davis and Goldbergs' (1957) seminal book titled "A concept of Agribusiness", which described three distinct yet interdependent sectors in a global food system. These include suppliers of agricultural inputs, producers of agricultural commodities, and institutions that perform the functional aspects associated with marketing food and fiber products. Fundamental to the concept of agribusiness is that many problems related to agriculture are interrelated and dependent upon political, sociological, economic and behavioral factors. In this special issue of the journal, we argue that the "field of agribusiness" is inherently a "scientifically pluralistic" endeavor to which efforts to define it as an academic discipline is not useful. In the introductory paper that follows, we provide a brief commentary about each of the articles featured in this special issue and discuss the opportunities and challenges of scientific pluralism for agribusiness research, teaching and extension.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-10
Number of pages10
JournalInternational Food and Agribusiness Management Review
Issue number5
StatePublished - 2011


  • Agribusiness
  • Scientific pluralism

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Food Science
  • Business and International Management


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