GM cotton and suicide rates for Indian farmers

    Research output: Working paper


    The arguments for and against genetically modified (GM) crops are spread across the academic literature and in the media. This paper focuses on one of these disputes: has the introduction of GM cotton in India led, as some have claimed, to an increase in the suicide rate for Indian farmers? Evidence on the numbers of suicides and the numbers of farmers is assembled from several sources, by state and over time for both male and female farmers. This evidence is, faute de mieux, at an aggregate level. The short time series are modelled to test whether there is any evidence of a break in the series that corresponds to the adoption of GM cotton. The analysis reveals considerable variation in trends in suicide rates across the nine cotton-growing states. The data, although not ideal, and the modelling do not, however, support the claim that GM cotton has led to an increase in farmer suicide rates: if anything the reverse is true.
    Original languageEnglish
    Place of PublicationManchester
    Number of pages30
    Publication statusPublished - 2014

    Publication series

    NameCCSR Working Paper series


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