Tag Archives: GM

  • The precautionary principle must be retained, unless we are willing to be reckless with our common future

    Guest blog by Rupert Read I recently submitted evidence to the House of Commons Science and Technology Committee inquiry on GM food and the Precautionary Principle. Unfortunately, as you’ll see intimated at the outset of my remarks there, I have relatively little faith in the inquiry. It seems to me that the inquiry’s terms have […]

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  • GM Food and the precautionary principle

    “Precaution does not necessarily mean a ban. It simply urges that time and space be found to get things right.” Professor Andy Stirling, writing in the Guardian Overview The UK House of Commons Science and Technology Select Committee is carrying out an inquiry into genetically modified (GM) foods and the way in which these are regulated in Europe […]

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  • GM Nation or GM Planet? How to involve citizens in decisions about transgenic crops

    The UK’s GM Nation? public debate – conducted over a decade ago, tried to include the voices of citizens in decision-making over transgenic crops. With recent decisions by China and India possibly signalling a shift of opinion against GM in these ‘rising powers’, what kinds of institutions are required to enable democratic governance of these […]

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  • GM Crops: Continuing controversy

    By Ian Scoones, STEPS Centre Director In 2002, the international press was full of headlines such as ‘Starving Zimbabwe Shuns GM Maize’. This was repeated again in 2010. The context was the refusal to import whole-grain GM maize from South Africa, as regulatory approval had not been granted, and there were fears that the food […]

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  • Investing in Food security? Philanthrocapitalism, biotechnology and development

    Sally Brooks, University of York This paper traces the evolution of philanthropic involvement in developing country agriculture from the ‘scientific philanthropy’ of the Rockefeller Foundation during and after the Green Revolution era to the ‘philathrocapitalism’ of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, by examining two cases of ‘pro-poor’ agricultural biotechnology research: pro-Vitamin A-enriched ‘Golden Rice’ […]

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  • Responses to frequently asked questions on genetically-modified crops and development

    GM Rice / BASF / Flickr Creative Commons By Andy Stirling, co-director of the STEPS Centre   Questions are never far from the headlines about how the world can farm more fairly, sustainably and productively. What is meant by these qualities varies greatly – including differing ways to raise income for poor farmers, improve nutrition, reduce environmental […]

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  • GM crops and biotechnology

    GM crops, Golden Rice and other related technologies polarise opinion: they are the solution to the global food crisis; or they are ‘frankenfoods’ causing irreversible environmental harm. Concerns about poverty, food insecurity and malnutrition, farmers’ livelihoods and the role of the private sector; the challenges of regulation in different settings; and how to involve the […]

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  • Biotechnology research archive

    The STEPS biotechnology research archive consists of evidence-based research on GM crops, food and development spanning the last 10 years.

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  • The GM debate should not be closed down to what is rational, but opened up to multiple rationalities…. A response to Chris Whitty and colleagues

      By Stephen Whitfield, PhD student, Institute of Development Studies (Knowledge, Technology and Society Team) Genetically modified rice / BASF   In a recent commentary published in Nature, Chris Whitty (chief scientific adviser at the UK Department for International Development) and colleagues rightly argue that the (ever-rich and seemingly-unending) debate over genetically modified crops should […]

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  • Biotechnology and its configurations: GM cotton production on large and small farms in Argentina

    Drawing on a socio-technical systems perspective we compare the ways in which novel genetically modified (GM) crop artefacts, related devices and techniques, actors, practices, and institutions have been linked together, or configured, across two distinctive cotton production systems in north east Argentina, one based around large-scale farming and the other based around small-scale family farming. […]

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