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UCL School of Slavonic and East European Studies (SSEES)

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Elena Teodora Ilie

Supervisors: Julia Korosteleva and Slavo Radosevic 

Email: elena.ilie.19@ucl.ac.uk

Present status: MPhil Candidate

Working title of thesis: The growth of the CEE food processing industry in the context of an increasingly integrated market

Research: The most immediate and major impact of the intensification of trade and FDI in the CEE food sector has been on domestic processors which represent the link between the farming community and the modern retail sector. Challenged by international competition and the need to abide by increasingly stringent regulations, domestic processors – particularly small and medium-sized ones - are facing great difficulties in building up the credentials required to supply present-day retailers.

Despite their important role in farmer-market linkages and the challenges they face in a former-controlled economy experiencing internationalization, scholars have neglected small and medium processors in the region. As such, the aim of the study is to determine the external and internal business environment factors that can support the growth of the food processing industry in the CEECs. Both micro-level and sectoral data will be used to identify different sets of enabling elements, which will eventually translate into policy recommendations.

Research interests: developing countries, agribusiness, SMEs, mixed-method approaches, rural development, business models, agri-food systems