Genetically Modified (GM) crops have been lauded as a tool to redress stagnating yields and food insecurity amongst poor farmers since their release in the early 1990s. The potential for GM crops to alleviate poverty for farmers in Low- and Middle-Income Countries (LMICs) will likely hinge on their ability to enhance women’s overall wellbeing, yet there is little research that evaluates if (and how) the technology has such transformative potential. This article reviews the existing scholarship on this topic by grouping it into three strands: 1) the impacts of GM crops on labor processes; 2) gender and patterns of adoption; and 3) the consequences of GM crops for intrahousehold gender relations. Each area is characterized by contradictory findings, reflecting the diversity and complexity of gender relations in different contexts. Our review suggests that further research should build on mixed-methods approaches that involve long-term interactions with households in order to generate robust and gender-disaggregated data that yields nuanced, context-specific analysis.
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