Helen Mahlase

Hellen Mahlase

Masters Student


Impacts of GM crops on smallholder farmers in South Africa
Supervisor: Assoc Prof Rachel Wynberg

I am a geographer at heart with interests in agricultural development in rural areas and Geographic Information Systems (GIS) and remote sensing research. I may have been drawn to geography and environmental studies through some subliminal conditioning and I would not have accepted this conditioning without actually being passionate about attempting to resolve environmental issues. I completed my BSc in Ecology, Environmental Conservation, and Geography in 2011.  For my Honours project at the University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, I investigated the long-term (1944-2009) changes in the cover of agricultural fields and settlements of Bushbuckridge.  My current research aims to evaluate the adoption of genetically modified crops by small-scale farmers in South Africa.

I am fiercely terrified of being similar to the cast of ‘The Big Bang Theory‘ by not having exciting interests outside academia.  So I cannot say that I love reading film scripts or rediscovering the ways of ancient civilizations and learning German. A safer option is to tell you about my growing interests in mixed martial arts and the evolution of weaponry. Now I am thinking that you think that I may have violent tendencies so I think it is wise to mention that I do volunteer work with children and I genuinely want to make the world a better place for all.