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Journal Articles

Gabor, D. and Brooks, S. (2016) The digital revolution in financial inclusion: international development in the fintech eraNew Political Economyfree to download here

Brooks, S. (2016) Inducing food insecurity: financialisation and development in the post-2015 era. Third World Quarterly, 37(5) 768-780

Brooks, S. and Roberts, E. (2015) ‘Simultaneous Immersion’: How online postgraduate study contributes to the development of reflective practice among public service practitionersInteractive Learning Environments

Brooks, S. (2014) Enabling Adaptation? Lessons from the new ‘Green Revolution’ in Malawi and Kenya, Climatic Change 122(1) 15-26

Brooks, S. (2013) Biofortification: lessons from the Golden Rice project, Food Chain 3(1) 77-88

Krätli, S., Huelsebusch, C., Brooks, S., Kaufmann, B. (2013) Pastoralism: a critical asset for food security under global climate change, Animal Frontiers, 3(1) 42-50

Brooks, S. and Loevinsohn, M.E. (2011) Shaping Agricultural Innovation Systems Responsive to Food Insecurity and Climate Change, Natural Resources Forum, 5(3) 185-200.

Brooks, S. (2011) ‘Living with Materiality or Confronting Asian Diversity? The Case of Iron-Biofortified Rice Research in the Philippines’, East Asian Science, Technology and Society (EASTS), 5 (2) 173–188

Brooks, S. (2011) ‘Is International Agricultural Research a Global Public Good? The Case of Rice Biofortification’, Journal of Peasant Studies, 38 (1) 67 – 80

Brooks, S. (2005) ‘Biotechnology and the Politics of Truth: From the Green Revolution to an Evergreen Revolution’, Sociologia Ruralis 45 (4) 360 – 379

Book (monograph)

Rice BiofortificationBrooks, S. (2010) Rice Biofortification: Lessons for Global Science and Development, London: Routledge

“essential reading for both critics and proponents of biotechnology in international development”

– Paul Richards, Professor Emeritus, Knowledge, Technology and Innovation, Wageningen University

For more reviews scroll down to the bottom of this page.

Book Chapters

Brooks, S. (2015) Philanthrocapitalism,  ‘pro-poor’ agricultural biotechnology and development,  in B. Morvaridi (Ed.) New Philanthropy and Social Justice: Debating the conceptual and policy discourse Policy Press: Bristol. (Click here for a pre-publication version of this chapter)

Brooks, S., D. Burges Watson, A. Draper, M. Goodman, H. Kvalvaag and W. Wills (2013) Chewing on Choice, in Abbots, E-J & Lavis, A (Eds.) Why We Eat, How We Eat: Contemporary Encounters Between Foods and BodiesFarnham: Ashgate. (Click here to download a PDF of this chapter)

Brooks, S. and Johnson-Beebout, S.E. (2012) Contestation as continuity? Biofortification research and the CGIAR. In Sumberg, J. and Thompson, J. (Eds.) Contested Agronomy: Agricultural Research in a Changing World. London: Routledge. (Click here for a pre-publication version of this chapter)

Working papers, reports and other publications

Brooks, S. (2016) Private finance and the post-2015 development agendaDevelopment Finance Agenda, 1, 3, p. 24-27 4 p., January 2016

Brooks, S. (2013) Investing in Food Security? Philanthrocapitalism, Biotechnology and Development SWPS 2013-12, SPRU – Science and Technology Policy Research: Brighton, 1 November 2013. Also available at SSRN:

Brooks, S. and Loevinsohn, M.E. (2011) Shaping Agricultural Innovation Systems Responsive to Food Insecurity and Climate Change: Background Paper to the World Economic and Social Survey (WESS) 2011. UNDESA: New York, New York.

Brooks, S., Thompson J., Odame H., Kibaara B., Nderitu S., Karin F. and Millstone, E. (2009) Environmental Change and Maize Innovation in Kenya: Exploring Pathways in and out of Maize, STEPS Working Paper 36, Brighton: STEPS Centre

Brooks, S., Leach M., Lucas, H. and Millstone, E. (2009) Silver Bullets, Grand Challenges and the New PhilanthropySTEPS Working Paper 24, Brighton: STEPS Centre

Millstone, E., Thompson, J. and Brooks, S. (2009) Reforming the Global Food and Agriculture System: Towards a Questioning Agenda for the New Manifesto, STEPS Working Paper 26, Brighton: STEPS Centre

Brooks, S. (2008) Global Science, Public Goods? Tracing International Science Policy Processes in Rice Biofortification, PhD Thesis, Brighton: University of Sussex

Brooks, S. (1996) Small Business Development in Papua New Guinea: Lessons, Department of Environment and Conservation/United Nations Development Programme, OPS-PNG/93/G31

Short articles, seminars and blogs

What can we learn from distance learners? Devex, 4 April 2016

Trade, sustainability and global governance, ‘Wicked Issues’ blog, Department of Social Policy and Social Work, University of York, 4 April 2016

GM crops and the developing world: opposing sides miss the bigger picture, The Conversation, 12 November 2015

Financing the sustainable development goals: reflections on FfD3. ‘Wicked Issues’ blog, Department of Social Policy and Social Work, University of York, 17 August 2015

Private finance and the post-2015 development agenda, openDemocracy, 23 May 2015

“We are what we eat, we’re all in trouble”. Public discussion on the politics and economics of food consumption and production organised by the International Institute for Promoting Political Economy (IIPPE), Hamilton House, Bristol, 21 January 2015.

Enabling Adaptation? Lessons from the new ‘Green Revolution’ in Malawi and KenyaAfrica Adaptation Knowledge Network (AAKNet) Newsletter No. 6 (June-July 2014)

Is there a need for Golden Rice? Friends of John Innes Centre event, Norwich Biosciences Institute, 29 January 2014

Investing in Food security? Philanthrocapitalism, biotechnology and development’, SPRU Friday Seminar, Science and Technology Policy Research (SPRU), University of Sussex, 15 November 2013.

Investing in Food Security? Philanthropcapitalism, biotechnology and development, openDemocracy, 18 July 2013

‘Golden Rice’ and the GM Crop debate The Crossing’, STEPS Centre, University of Sussex, 24 June 2013

Biofortification and the biopolitics of sustainable development, SOAS Food Forum, University of London, 8 March 2013

Golden Rice’: a golden opportunity?The Crossing’, STEPS Centre, University of Sussex20 April 2011

‘Opening up the GM Crop Debate’, People and Science (British Science Association) March 2010

Reviews of ‘Rice Biofortification: Lessons for Global Science and Development’ (Earthscan: 2010)

‘A deeply thought-provoking book, this study of biofortification in rice explores how and why public science so often irons out complex needs into a demand for pre-packaged solutions. Are the great private philanthropic foundations and the brilliant scientists they fund simply incapable of understanding the lives of the rural poor? The author prefers instead to make a case for deep institutional reform, offering space for new types of partnership. Biofortification could yet become an exemplar of a different, boundary-crossing, socially-informed science for poverty alleviation. Her book is essential reading for both critics and proponents of biotechnology in international development’ – Paul Richards, Emeritis Professor, Knowledge, Technology and Innovation, Wageningen University, The Netherlands

‘A lucid analysis of the decision making in international agricultural research which emphasizes a technical, commercial approach. Malnutrition is far better tackled with a biodiversity approach that makes available local foods that can be eaten fresh and are free – Suman Sahai, Convenor, Gene Campaign, New Delhi, India

Rice Biofortification convincingly illustrates the tenacity of the top down linear research paradigm which unfortunately still dominates the international agricultural research agenda. How researchers can effectively work with local contexts is an important issue, which the author handles admirably’ – Joachim Voss, independent research professional, formerly Director General of the International Centre for Tropical Agriculture (CIAT), Cali, Colombia

‘Don’t be fooled by the title. This book is of greater importance and broader relevance that its … title would lead readers to believe. Sally Brooks, an experienced international development practitioner and an agile researcher, uses the case of rice biofortification to argue for a more context-sensitive approach to ‘science for development’… Brooks’s level-headed version of this argument is newly important for at least three reasons, which are each explored in her text: first, because of the recent hegemonic influence of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) that structure notions of impact and drive programmatic design; second, because of the rise of Silicon Valley-style philanthropy, notably the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation (BMGF); and third, because of new pressures for urgent solutions to the … food crisis’ –  Joanna Davidson, Assistant Professor of Anthropology, Boston University, Journal of Peasant Studies, 40(4): 790-795 (2013).

‘One of Brooks’ key arguments is that the silver bullet approach seems flawed from the start, by seeking a universal solution for very different situations thus ignoring the end-consumers, with their cultural contexts, habits and expectations. The idea behind generating an international public good that can be disseminated for adaption and adoption in various places is a top-down process that dismisses local knowledge and experience. Her analysis, however, is not disparaging but rather conciliatory. By explaining the pros and cons of various situations, the reader can understand the tensions and potentials within an innovative field’ – Raul Acosta, ITESO University, Mexico, Journal of Biosocial Science 44:127-128 (2012)

‘Focusing on the case of rice biofortification this elegantly written book argues that increasing concerns over food security are pushing policy makers towards taking top-down approaches to science and research policy’ – Peter Gregory, Professor of Global Food Security, University of Reading, Journal of Experimental Agriculture, 47(3): 178 (2011)

‘I will admit that upon receiving the book, I anticipated a science-focused discussion that could be used in a genetic engineering course. Instead, the policy coverage was an eye-opening viewpoint different than that told in the public press or the news and views sections of scientific journals. With careful documentation by Brooks, Rice Biofortification reads as a history book connecting personalities whose decisions led to formation of a central scientific process removed from the agricultural development issues initially identified’ – Wilson Crone, Albany Medical College, Journal of Economic Botany, 65(4):433-434 (2011)

‘A book for those formulating and appraising scientific research and its impact on social development’ New Agriculturalist

‘The issues related to the organisation of public science and research highlighted in the book are very relevant in the context of the recent debates in India related to the commerical release of Bt Brinjal. Rice Biofortification would be useful for both critics and proponents of biotechnology’ – Green Teacher (, Centre for Environment Education (CEE), Ahmedabad, Gujarat, India

‘The book is presented in a logical format making it available to a wide range of readers, including agricultural and nutritional scientists/researchers, consultants, policy makers and especially funding agencies/donors’ – Atif Kamran, Department of Botany, University of Punjab, Pakistan; and Muhammad Asif, Department of Agricultural, Food and Nutritional Science at the University of Alberta, Journal of Agriculture and Human Values, 30:143–144 (2013)