Degree Name

MA in Sustainable Development

First Advisor

Dr. Teresa Healy

Second Advisor

Dr. Teresa Healy


This research examines the food sovereignty movement in the Southern Peninsula of Haiti. The Southern Peninsula of Haiti was affected by one of the strongest hurricanes the region has seen: Hurricane Matthew. This paper explores the issue of how International Non-Governmental Organizations (INGO) flood into this region and how their presence impacts farmers throughout Haiti. This research investigates the strong tradition of autonomy and farming within Haiti using the lens of Movman Payzan 3eme Section Kanperen (MP3K); a farmer organization in this region that promotes food sovereignty and urges farmers to use agro-ecology methods to grow their food.

This paper explores the MP3k approach amidst neoliberal policies that have been implemented by the Food Aid Organization (FAO) and how this organization has overcome adversity. The analysis of this research includes a literature review where three nodes are identified: Climate Change Adaptation, Environmental Disaster, and Empowerment. We examine how all of which apply to the farming community during Hurricane Matthew. This research uses a critical discourse analysis to deconstruct frequently used terms implemented by the international development community. The purpose is to uncover the implications of these “buzzwords” within the community of MP3K as well as the international development community and to demonstrate how those two groups have conflicting perspectives and interpretations for each buzzword.

My analysis of this research results provides an understanding of how the MP3k food sovereignty movement works in solidarity to defend and improve their food sovereignty as an alternative to the environmental issues impacting Haiti. Although Haitian farmers have experienced situations beyond their control such as hurricanes, this community finds solace in approaches such as agro-ecology. Konbit and Madan Sara, two community-based approaches that MP3K utilizes to adapt to climate change, empower women in their community to be sustainable on their own. This paper argues that Haitian leaders should embrace the food sovereignty movement and give farmers that practice such strategies an agency. In doing so, Haitian farmers will be able to dismantle their structural dependence on foreign aid efforts grounded in neoliberalism, with hopes of establishing an alternative to food aid in Haiti.


African History | African Languages and Societies | Agricultural and Resource Economics | Anthropology | Civic and Community Engagement | Community-Based Learning | Community-Based Research | Demography, Population, and Ecology | Food Studies | Growth and Development | Indigenous Studies | Inequality and Stratification | International and Area Studies | Nonprofit Administration and Management | Quantitative, Qualitative, Comparative, and Historical Methodologies | Race and Ethnicity | Regional Economics | Rural Sociology | Theory, Knowledge and Science | Tourism and Travel | Women's Studies | Work, Economy and Organizations