An alternative market organization: The case of cut flower Exchange in Turkey

Özlem Öz, Koray Çalışkan


Markets have frequently been criticized for their structural bias towards producing inequality. Yet the cut-flower market in Turkey provides the literature, the peasants and consumers with an alternative form of designing markets that introduces democratic participation to the organization of exchange relations. This paper scrutinizes the structure and functioning of the cut-flowers market in Turkey with the purpose of contributing towards a better understanding of how more sustainable and less asymmetrical forms of market exchange can be designed and maintained. Introducing a conversation between new social studies of markets and organization theory, the article calls for going beyond seeing markets as universal institutions of exchange that produce either negative or positive results simply by the virtue of their presence. Markets can foster or impede justice, depending on the form of their organization. Cut flower markets in Turkey present a unique case that illustrates not only the possibility of market design from below but also rethinking the findings of new social studies of markets and organization theory.


markets, cut flowers, auctioning, cooperatives, social studies of markets, organization theory

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