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Title: Developing an Institutional Working Mechanism for the Production of Health-Tested Citrus Seedling – Confronting Citrus Huanglongbing in Bhutan
Contributor(s): Dorji, Kinley  (author)orcid ; Backhouse, David  (supervisor)orcid ; Hunt, Peter W  (supervisor); Miller, Judith Anne  (supervisor)orcid ; Tenzin, Jigme (supervisor); Wu, Shubiao  (supervisor)orcid 
Conferred Date: 2023-10-09
Copyright Date: 2023-05-19
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Citrus is an important export commodity of Bhutan that is now decimated by Citrus Huanglongbing (HLB). The production and use of health tested citrus seedlings have been identified as one of the main HLB management strategies and the starting point for the establishment of a successful citrus orchard. However, the production of Health Tested Citrus Seedlings (HTCS) in Bhutan was confronted with multiple issues leading to an embargo on production since 2016. This portfolio investigated the complex issues that led to an embargo on HTCS production in Bhutan. The main aim of the portfolio was to identify issues and solutions to enable restarting of the HTCS production by engaging the stakeholders in framing workable mechanisms and the future pathways for sustaining the HTCS production. Based on the complexity and system thinking perspectives, a transdisciplinary methodological approach was employed. This included five case studies aimed at understanding the different contexts that influence the HTCS production: Firstly, the Bhutanese agricultural research and policy context deployed documentary analysis where 33 government documents were included for framework analysis. Secondly, the research and innovation system used 110 peer-reviewed articles published in the Bhutanese national journals. Thirdly, the technicalities of the HTCS production and regulatory standards used four technical guidelines or documents followed in four countries (US, Spain, Taiwan and Australia). Fourthly, the perspectives of stakeholders from focus group discussions(16 individuals participated) and individual interviews (14 stakeholders participated). Finally, institution field engagement and observations from four institutes involved in HTCS production are presented.

Our findings from the agricultural research and the policy context suggest the need for synchronisation and harmonisation of intervention programs with the actual needs of the beneficiaries. Policy dialogue, between and among policy makers, researchers, funding agencies, and local institutions were found necessary to enhance the effectiveness and efficiency of the intervention program. Likewise, the Bhutanese HTCS production had several factors (the confirmation of disease-free status, adaptation of process, use of tolerant varieties, certification of nursery trees) in deficit which were due to inadequate funds and human resource capacity. Stakeholders' perspective analysis also suggested inadequate fund, human resource capacity and infrastructure. The Bhutanese Department of Agriculture has limited authority and access to communication over the issues identified with the relevant authorities. There is a need for a direct policy dialogue between the relevant agencies to sustain HTCS production in the future.

Publication Type: Thesis Doctoral
Fields of Research (FoR) 2020: 300209 Germplasm management
300804 Horticultural crop protection (incl. pests, diseases and weeds)
440710 Research, science and technology policy
Socio-Economic Objective (SEO) 2020: 180602 Control of pests, diseases and exotic species in terrestrial environments
230204 Public services policy advice and analysis
260504 Citrus fruit
HERDC Category Description: T2 Thesis - Doctorate by Research
Description: Please contact if you require access to this thesis for the purpose of research or study.
Appears in Collections:School of Education
School of Environmental and Rural Science
Thesis Doctoral

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