Technological innovation as a climate adaptation strategy for soybean production in Ontario
Technological innovation is frequently advocated as one of the key adaptation mechanisms for agriculture in coping with future climate change. This research explores and assesses the nature of the relationships among climatic variability, agricultural production systems, and technological innovation. Interviews were conducted with plant breeding experts in the public, academic and private domains. The central goal throughout the interview process was to determine how plant breeding programs as representative of technological innovations have evolved, and continue to evolve, with respect to research priorities in general, and climatic variability in particular. The research results are used to elaborate and make more explicit the connections in existing models between climate and technology within farming systems. Emphasis is given to the role of technology as an adaptive response to climatic stimuli. Broadly, the consideration of climate in breeding programs is influenced and constrained by economic, institutional and competing market needs.