Katie Dentzman

University of Idaho postdoctoral research associate Katie Dentzman wants to learn and share the “human dimension” of herbicide resistance to help farmers find solutions.

As a social scientist, UI research associate Katie Dentzman is tackling the growing problem of herbicide resistance in weeds.

She's also working to supporting women farmers in Idaho.

She works with Ryanne Pilgeram, associate professor in UI's sociology and anthropology department, conducting surveys and focus groups, to build resources for women farmers.

"Number one is find out what they need and number two, give them that support," Dentzman said.

She'd like to combine her work at UI with her herbicide resistance research.

Dentzman and Pilgeram are investigating the stereotype that women are using more conservation practices. Pilgeram wonders if this is due to women's attitudes, or if they don't have the same access to resources that male farmers do and must farm smaller areas or organically to make a living.

"It would be very interesting to look at gender differences in how people are approaching herbicide resistance," Dentzman said

Dentzman wanted to include the topic in her dissertation, but didn't get enough survey responses from women farmers to be statistically significant.

"Surveying is very difficult," Dentzman said. "Getting a sample of farmers, insanely difficult. And so getting a sample of farmers who are underrepresented, such as women or minority farmers, can be really tough."

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