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Abstract

Much of the world's food supply is supported by crop varieties developed from plant genetic resources by plant breeders in the public, private and smallholder spheres. International movement of plant genetic resources has changed markedly in recent decades due to changes in international treaties, such as the Convention on Biodiversity and the International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources. This study uses the SSP institutional analysis paradigm to describe the performance outcomes of the interaction of international treaties with inherent interdependencies such as high information costs, high contracting costs, high exclusion costs and economies of scale. It examines some of the driving forces of institutional change in the negotiation of the three treaties, identifies possible useful institutional linkages at the national level and suggests area for later empirical research.

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