How will the industrial changes implicit within new biotechnologies affect modern agriculture? This book investigates these changes and provides an economic analysis of the industrial and distributional impacts of new biotechnologies, addressing in detail the significant consequences for developing countries. One of the most important aspects of biotechnological change is the development of new technologies for appropriating the value of innovations in related industries. In agriculture these new appropriation technologies are known as "genetic use restriction technologies", which enable the innovator to capture the value of innovative plant varieties by preventing their reproduction after purchase. This book analyzes the implications of such technologies in terms of global agricultural production, the rate of innovation at the technological frontier and, in particular, the diffusion of these innovations across the globe. The authors set forth the economic and institutional framework within which innovations are occurring, focusing on the impacts on the least technologically advanced nations and their incentives to conserve genetic resources for use in future research and development. This book should be widely read by agricultural and resource economists, development economists, and scholars and researchers of environmental economics. Policymakers in developing countries should also gain valuable insights into the distribution of the potential benefits from biotechnology.
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