Alice Karuri


In 2000 while in my second year of undergraduate studies, I undertook an independent study on multinational corporations in developing countries. In the course of conversations with the lecturer and after watching a documentary on agri-business corporations and small-scale farmers, I became profoundly aware of the issue of trade justice. This influenced my decision to change my major from journalism to economics.

While researching on the effect of climate change on small-scale tea and coffee farmers, I realized the importance of sustainable trade as an integral part of trade justice. Sustainable trade requires a comprehensive and integrated approach that goes beyond farmer incomes, to address social and environmental challenges. Social justice remains at the heart of all I do, and I believe that sustainable development is at its core an issue of social justice. All research in one way or another, is an effort towards a just world.

Research Interests

Research interests include global commodity chains, sustainable agriculture and trade, social justice. My research interest in commodity chains was sparked by the numerous media reports on the challenges facing coffee farmers. It was ironic that Kenya produced some of the best coffee in the world and yet the farmers were faced with innumerable challenges.

Current Research

My current research is on sustainability in global commodity chains. I am particularly interested in indicators that go beyond sustainable production and capture the aspect of sustainable trade for small producers.

Brief CV


Strathmore University                                                                                             November 2019 – Present

School of Humanities and Social Sciences

Lecturer, Development Studies


Ph.D. Development Studies                                                                                     2019

Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology, Juja, Kenya

Thesis title: Producer Institutional Arrangements in Kenya’s Coffee Sector

and their Effect on Economic Benefits to Farmers

M.A. International Affairs.                                                                                      2009

George Washington University, Washington D.C., USA

B.A. Economics                                                                                                             2003

Morgan State University, Baltimore Maryland, USA


Karuri, A. (2020). Adaptation of Small-Scale Tea and Coffee Farmers in Kenya to Climate Change. In W.L. Filho (Ed). African Handbook of Climate Change Adaptation.     Springer        Publishing.

Karuri, A.N., Ondieki-Mwaura, F. and Omondi, H. Ability of Farmers to Negotiate with

Chain Actors in the Coffee Sector in Kenya.  Journal of Economics and Development Studies. 6(2): 45-48. 2018.

Karuri, A. N., Ondieki-Mwaura, F. and Omondi, H. Characterization of

Producer Institutional Arrangements in the Coffee Sector in Kenya and Policy Implications for Farmer Empowerment. Journal of Social Science for Policy Implications. 6(1): 18-25. 2018