This paper examines the role of individual risk attitudes in the decision to adopt a new form of agricultural biotechnology in China. I conducted a survey and a field experiment to elicit the risk preferences of Chinese farmers, who faced the decision of whether to adopt genetically modified Bt cotton a decade ago. In my analysis, I expand the measurement of risk preferences beyond expected utility theory to incorporate prospect theory. I find that farmers who are more risk averse or more loss averse adopt Bt cotton later. Farmers who overweight small probabilities adopt Bt cotton earlier.

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