This paper reviews the literature on the subject of the role of improved agricultural technology in alleviating poverty in developing countries. Focusing primarily on improved cultivars produced by the international agricultural research system, it shows how new technology combines with other socioeconomic and institutional factors to determine poverty alleviation outcomes. Technology’s role in alleviating poverty is both indirect and partial; technology alone cannot overcome poverty, nor can continued poverty be blamed on improved technology. The review is organized into three parts in addition to the introduction and conclusion. Part I introduces poverty (Chapter 2) and the achievements of agricultural research (Chapter 3).