Dr. Carmen Bain

Associate Professor


Office:316 East Hall
510 Farm House Ln.
Ames IA

Topics of interest: agriculture and international development, political economy, social dimensions of GMOs


Dr. Bain's research interests include the political economy of food and agricultural systems; gender, agriculture and international development; and the social dimensions of genetically modified (GMOs) foods and crops. She has conducted research in Chile, Ghana, New Zealand and the US.

Dr Bain teaches undergraduate and graduate classes in the sociology of agriculture and food systems, the sociology of the environment, and rural sociology. She is the advisor for the undergraduate major, Agriculture & Society.

Select Journal Articles

Bain, C. and T. Selfa. 2017. Non-GMO vs Organic Labels: Purity or Process Standards in a GMO Contaminated Landscape. Agriculture and Human Values.

Bain, C., T. Selfa, *T. Dandachi, *S. Velardi. 2017. ‘Superweeds’ or ‘Survivors’? Framing the Problem of Glyphosate Resistant Weeds and Genetically Engineered Crops. Journal of Rural Studies. 51(April): 211-221.

Bain, C. and *T. Dandachi. (2014). Governing GMOs: The (Counter)Movement for Mandatory and Voluntary Non-GMO Labels. Sustainability. Vol. 6(12): 9456-9476.

Bain, C. and T. Selfa. 2013. Framing and Reframing the Environmental Risks and Economic Benefits of Ethanol Production in Iowa. Agriculture and Human Values. 30(3): 351-364.

Bain, C., E. Ransom and V. Higgins. (2013). Contestation, Hybridity and the Politics of Standards. International Journal of Sociology of Agriculture and Food.20(1):1-10.

Ransom, E. and C. Bain. (2011). Gendering Agricultural Aid: An Analysis of Whether International Development Assistance Targets Women and Gender. Gender & Society. 25(1): 48-74.

Bain, C., E. Ransom and M. Worosz. (2011)Constructing Credibility: Using Technoscience to Legitimate Strategies in Agrifood Governance. Journal of Rural Social Sciences. 25(3): 160-192.

Bain, C. (2010). Structuring the Flexible and Feminized Labor Market: GLOBALGAP Standards for Agricultural Labor in Chile. Signs: Journal of Women in Culture and Society. 35(2): 343-370.

Selected Book Chapters

Bain, C. (2014). Chilean Temporeras and Corporate Construction of Gender Inequalities in Global Food Standards. Pp. 119-136. In W. Dunaway (ed). Gendered Commodity Chains: Seeing Women’s Work and Households in Global Production. Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press.

Selfa, T., C. Bain and *R. Moreno. (2014). Colombia. Pp. 157-178. In Solomon, B. and R. Bailis (eds). Sustainable Development of Biofuels in Latin America and the Caribbean. New York: Springer.

Bain, C. and M. Hatanaka. (2010). The Practice of Third-Party Certification: Enhancing Environmental Sustainability and Social Justice in the Global South? pp. 56-74. In V. Higgins and W. Larner (eds). Calculating the Social: Standards and the Re-configuration of Governing.Basingstoke: Palgrave MacMillan.

Selected News Articles

GMOs symbolize broader concerns. Feedstuffs. Vol 88 (9): September 5, 2016.
GMO labeling issue far from finished. The Dickinson Press. North Dakota. August 8, 2016.
Food industry, which opposed GMO labeling, now embraces it. St Louis Dispatch. July 29, 2016.
Bringing Back the Human Side to Ag. AgriBusiness Global. May 25, 2016.
Facts, not fears, the key to dealing with GM foods. The Straits Times. Singapore. April 1, 2016.
Campbell’s GMO move heralds change in labeling debate. Politico. January 12, 2016.
Big Food no longer has a united front on GMO labeling. St Louis Dispatch. January 11, 2016.
Congress is having a messy food fight over GMO labeling. The Verge. August 4, 2015.
Emotion, politics take over in US GMO labelling debate, science left out. ABC (Australia Broadcasting Corporation) July 30, 2015.
GMO label debate a ‘wicked’ problem. Capital Press. July 24, 2015.
Amid the GMO labeling fight, industry experts weigh in. Tampa Bay Times. July 23, 2015.