Part of the Environment & Policy book series (ENPO, volume 53)


There is something about wheat. Of all the basic foodstuffs, this grain seems to arouse the most passion and attract the greatest attention of governments. Works on the wheat industry frequently cite Socrates’ observation that ‘Nobody is qualified to become a statesman who is entirely ignorant of the problem of wheat’ (see for example Dunsdorfs 1956: 263; Morriss 1987: 1). The market for grain has also been ranked with oil cartels and financial markets as a source of power and influence (Morgan 1979: 228). This book describes how one government, that of Australia, has dealt with the ‘problem of wheat’. In so doing it tracks the life and death of collective wheat marketing as an institution, and its organisational manifestation in the form of the Australian Wheat Board which was central to Australian wheat marketing for nearly 60 years. The manner in which the Board continued successfully to reproduce itself over time provides a neat example of how competing values play out in the policy process and how institutions having been established to further one set of values can effectively exclude other values from policy consideration.


Policy process Historical institutionalism Values Australia Rural policy 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Faculty of Business and GovernmentUniversity of CanberraCanberraAustralia

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