Reduction of global food insecurity depends upon the mobilization of genetic diversity for agricultural research and innovation. Yet increased regulation of genetic materials is profoundly affecting the way agricultural research is conducted, particularly international research that requires access to diverse germplasm. This study draws from an international survey of researchers in USAID Feed the Future Innovation Labs to understand how regulations affect access, exchange and use of genetic material within an international collaborative research environment. Although the effects of regulation depend on the research context – crop, sector, collaborative relationships, country and institutional source – transaction costs are increasing and researchers are changing strategies to access genetic material. The new regulatory environment is merging a traditional informal exchange system, perceived to be more open, with a more formal system that sets rules on access and use of genetic materials to address social, economic and environmental goals.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Food Science
- Safety, Risk, Reliability and Quality
- Safety Research