Risk Perceptions for Genetically Modified Organisms: An Empirical Investigation

Pranav Dass, Md M. Chowdhury, Damian Lampl, and Kendall E Nygard


Perceptions, GMOs, Empirical Study, Mind Maps, Prestudy, Poststufy


Understanding of the perceptions of consumers toward food products is a highly challenging task. The presence of biotechnology in food products, such as genetic modifications, gives rise to differing views on its benefits and risks. We report analyses of survey data aimed at carefully understanding the risk perceptions of consumers toward food products that involve genetically modified organisms (GMOs). We report results from an empirical study that investigates the changes in consumer perceptions when exposed to informative material concerning GMOs in food products. A survey instrument was designed using Qualtrics API to formulate a set of questions regarding GMOs (including both the pre and post study questionnaire) and all the participants were recruited via Amazon Mechanical Turk API. The responses were collected and thoroughly analyzed by creating relevant mind maps using Network Overview Discovery and Exploration for Excel (NodeXL) plugin. The analyzed results were further validated by conducting appropriate statistical analyses using Statistical Analysis System (SAS).

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