Colonial agricultural research was directed mainly to. export crops rather than the major foodgrains.2 The lack of research on foodgrains is given as one of the reasons for the food shortages in the period after World War II. "Colonialism stunted indigenous agriculture by directing agricultural research only to export crops" (Lappe and Collins). This paper examines the allocation of research resources and the impact of research on productivity in South and Southeast Asia. The paper also attempts to identify the main determinants of the allocation of agricultural research resources during the colonial period.