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Industrialization of Seed Production: Implications for Agriculture in India

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For more content, please see Journal of Developing Societies.

[From the sociology of science perspective, this paper attempts to trace the shifts in the knowledge and its application in the context of seed production—the central input in agriculture. The paper argues that the seed production, which was once in the hands of farming communities, has become industrialized with the advent of hybrid seeds. The hybrid seed production, based on phenotypic knowledge of the plants, marks the first phase of the industrialization of seed and the genetically modified seed, based on genotypic knowledge of the plants, marks the beginning of another phase in the industrialization of seed production. This paper draws attention to controversies over genetically modified seed based on economic, social, environmental considerations. This paper also discusses the implications of these developments and the changes in the institutional arrangements that govern the production and use of the seed, as these developments have profound implications for Indian agriculture and agrarian relations., Abstract From the sociology of science perspective, this paper attempts to trace the shifts in the knowledge and its application in the context of seed production—the central input in agriculture. The paper argues that the seed production, which was once in the hands of farming communities, has become industrialized with the advent of hybrid seeds. The hybrid seed production, based on phenotypic knowledge of the plants, marks the first phase of the industrialization of seed and the genetically modified seed, based on genotypic knowledge of the plants, marks the beginning of another phase in the industrialization of seed production. This paper draws attention to controversies over genetically modified seed based on economic, social, environmental considerations. This paper also discusses the implications of these developments and the changes in the institutional arrangements that govern the production and use of the seed, as these developments have profound implications for Indian agriculture and agrarian relations.]

Affiliations: 1: Department of Humanities and Social Sciences, Indian Institute of Technology Guwahati Guwahati, 781039, Assam, India; , sambit_raja@yahoo.com, Email: sambit@iitg.ernet.in; 2: Department of Sociology, and Centre for Knowledge, Culture and Innovation Studies, University of Hyderabad Hyderabad 500046, Andhra Pradesh, India; 3: Department of Sociology, University of Hyderabad, Hyderabad 500046, Andhra Pradesh, India

10.1163/156914911X609288
/content/journals/10.1163/156914911x609288
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/content/journals/10.1163/156914911x609288
2011-09-01
2016-12-08

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