Keywords: innovation, agricultural technology, commodification, technoscience, social exclusion, spatial exclusion, intellectual property rights, IPR, MAS, marker–assisted selection, India, agriculture, genomics, biotic stresses, abiotic stresses, yield enhancement
The orbit of commodified technoscience: innovations in agricultural technology in India
The paper reviews the strategies by the Government of India over time to improve the state of agriculture. The institutional framework within which these strategies were conceived of and implemented though have contributed to improvement in agricultural productivity have led to larger consequences. Productivity based on green revolution strategy has reached a plateau and substantial yield gaps still persist. The emergence of gene revolution and ushering in of the new institutional framework guided by the Intellectual Property Rights regime have further contributed to the conflicting debates on appropriate technologies in agriculture in India. The paper focuses on the potential of non–controversial, genomics–based marker–assisted selection (MAS) technology for addressing biotic and abiotic stresses, and yield enhancement in agriculture. MAS is a non–proprietary technology, having seldom conflicting interests about ownership and control. It has the potential to promote more inclusive and user–centred innovations in agriculture in all the regions including rain–fed areas.