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How agricultural research systems shape a technological regime that develops genetic engineering but locks out agroecological innovations

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  • Vanloqueren, Gaëtan
  • Baret, Philippe V.

Abstract

Agricultural science and technology (S&T) is under great scrutiny. Reorientation towards more holistic approaches, including agroecology, has recently been backed by a global international assessment of agriculture S&T for development (IAASTD). Understanding the past and current trends of agricultural S&T is crucial if such recommendations are to be implemented. This paper shows how the concepts of technological paradigms and trajectories can help analyse the agricultural S&T landscape and dynamics. Genetic engineering and agroecology can be usefully analysed as two different technological paradigms, even though they have not been equally successful in influencing agricultural research. We used a Systems of Innovation (SI) approach to identify the determinants of innovation (the factors that influence research choices) within agricultural research systems. The influence of each determinant is systematically described (e.g. funding priorities, scientists' cognitive and cultural routines etc.). As a result of their interactions, these determinants construct a technological regime and a lock-in situation that hinders the development of agroecological engineering. Issues linked to breaking out of this lock-in situation are finally discussed.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Research Policy.

Volume (Year): 38 (2009)
Issue (Month): 6 (July)
Pages: 971-983

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Handle: RePEc:eee:respol:v:38:y:2009:i:6:p:971-983

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Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/respol

Related research

Keywords: Technological trajectories Evolutionary economics Transgenic plants Lock-in Path dependence;

References

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Blog mentions

As found by EconAcademics.org, the blog aggregator for Economics research:
  1. Golden rice is no silver bullet: hunger needs a political solution
    by Claire Parfitt, Research student at University of Sydney in The Conversation on 2013-02-20 03:24:25
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Cited by:
  1. Jacquet, Florence & Butault, Jean-Pierre & Guichard, Laurence, 2011. "An economic analysis of the possibility of reducing pesticides in French field crops," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 70(9), pages 1638-1648, July.
  2. Elsa Berthet & Cécile Barnaud & Nathalie Girard & Julie Labatut, 2012. "Toward a reflexive framework to compare collective design methods for farming system innovation," Post-Print hal-00781251, HAL.
  3. James Sumberg & John Thompson & Philip Woodhouse, 2013. "Why agronomy in the developing world has become contentious," Agriculture and Human Values, Springer, vol. 30(1), pages 71-83, March.
  4. Les Levidow & Katerina Psarikidou, 2011. "Food Relocalization for Environmental Sustainability in Cumbria," Sustainability, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 3(4), pages 692-719, April.
  5. Desquilbet, Marion & Dorin, Bruno & Couvet, Denis, 2013. "Land sharing vs. land sparing for biodiversity: How agricultural markets make the difference," TSE Working Papers 13-435, Toulouse School of Economics (TSE).
  6. Leonhard Dobusch & Elke Schü�ler, 2013. "Theorizing path dependence: a review of positive feedback mechanisms in technology markets, regional clusters, and organizations," Industrial and Corporate Change, Oxford University Press, vol. 22(3), pages 617-647, June.

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