Ronald Herring has taught political economy and political ecology at Cornell University since 1991. At Cornell he has served as Director of the Mario Einaudi Center for International Studies, as the John S. Knight Professor of International Relations, Chair of the Department of Government and Director of the South Asia Program - among other posts. He has been editor of Comparative Political Studies, and remains on its editorial board, among others. Among his writings are several books including Land to the Tiller: The Political Economy of Agrarian Reform in South Asia (Yale/Oxford, winner of the Edgar Graham Prize), Carrots, Sticks and Ethnic Conflict: Rethinking Development Assistance (with Milton Esman, University of Michigan Press); and Transgenics and the Poor (Routledge, Oxon/London 2007), derived from his edited special issue of The Journal of Development Studies, awarded The Dudley Seers Memorial Prize [London 2008] and Whatever Happened to Class  with Rina Agarwala [Routledge UK, Daanish India, Lexington US]. He was with Ken Roberts team leader of the project on “Contentious Knowledge: Science, Social Science and Social Movements, 2006-2009” at the Institute for the Social Sciences. Ron is editor of the new Oxford Handbook of Food, Politics and Society, due out in web and print editions from Oxford University Press in 2014.
Reconstructing facts in Bt cotton: Why scepticism fails
02 Jun 2014
In disputes around Bt cotton, a “triumph narrative” is alleged to have emerged from researchers - mainly economists - catering to vested interests of the biotech industry, its funding and allied journals promoting biotechnology. This column explains why the ‘conspiracy theory’ fails, and then illustrates why the main claims of the peer-reviewed literature demonstrating agro-economic success of Bt cotton are consistent with the near universal adoption of the technology by farmers in India.
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