Seed Biotechnology Center
Seed Biotechnology Center
Seed Biotechnology Center
University of California
Seed Biotechnology Center

Meeting on Biotechnology Regulation

Meeting on Biotechnology Regulation

Preparation for the 4th Meeting of the Parties to the Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety (MOP4) and the 9th Conference of the Parties to the Convention on Biodiversity (COP9)

Organized by: Public Research and Regulation Initiative (PRRI) and the Seed Biotechnology Center during the Plant Sciences Symposium: "Translational Seed Biology: From Model Systems to Crop Improvement"

Date: 17 September 2007, 1:30-4:30 pm
Venue: Plant and Environmental Sciences, Room 3001 on the UC Davis campus

1:30 - 2:00  Welcome by PRRI
Importance of involvement of public researchers in Regulations and Policy, Allen Van Deynze, University of California, Davis

2:00 - 2:15 PRRI-IFPRI Database of Public Sector Research in Modern Biotechnology, Patricia Zambrano (IFPRI)

2:15 - 4:30  Introduction to the Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety (CPB) and the Convention on Biodiversity (CBD) - Topics on the agenda of MOP4 and COP9 Plenary discussion on topics, Hector Quemada and Karen Hokanson (Biotechnology and Biodiversity Interface)

Background information:
Governments, academia and organizations throughout the world invest considerably in public research in modern biotechnology to strengthen the sustainable production of food, feed and fibre, to address water shortage, to improve health care and environmental protection. The extent to which modern biotechnology will be able to contribute to these goals depends, among others, on the regulations that apply. National regulations are strongly influenced by international agreements, such as the Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety (CPB). During the development of these international agreements, the public research sector, which counts tens of thousands researchers in several thousand research institutes in developing and developed countries, has in the past not been represented in any significant, organized way. 

About PRRI
The objective of the Public Research and Regulation Initiative (PRRI) is to offer public researchers involved in modern biotechnology a forum through which they are informed about and involved in relevant international discussions, such as the Meetings of the Parties to the CPB (MOPs). Goal of participation in such meetings is to inform the negotiators about the objectives and progress of public research in modern biotechnology, to bring science to the negotiations, and to inform the negotiators about concerns of the public research sector.

Objectives of this side-event
PRRI organises this side event to introduce public researchers to the Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety (CPB) and the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) and to seek their input on the topics on the agenda.

Topics of MOP4 that are relevant for public researchers are: Liability and Redress; Risk Assessment and Risk Management; Biosafety Clearing House (BCH); Roster of experts; Capacity building; Handling, Packaging and Use; Socio-economic considerations in decision making; Public Participation; Review of the functioning of the Protocol.

Topics of COP9 that are relevant for public researchers in modern biotechnology are: GM Trees, GURTS, Agricultural Biodiversity, the work programme and IPR.

PRRI invites both public researchers and government officials to attend these meetings to have informal exchange of views.

PRRI-IFPRI Database of Public Sector Research in Modern Biotechnology
Although governments in both the developed and the developing world fund public research for the production of GM crops for their potential benefits, agricultural biotechnology is still persisted as the exclusive domain of a handful of multinationals. In order to eliminate this misconception the public research sector needs to provide more information on the different products they have in the pipelines worldwide.

Together with IFPRI (International Food Policy Research Institute), PRRI started the development of a web-based database to provide an up-to-date overview of the areas of agricultural R&D activities performed by public research institutions in developed and developing countries. An important aspect of the overview is that it does not only show the types of R&D underway but also the background and objective for undertaking this research.

The goals for this database are to:

  • maintain up-to-date inventory of all public research crop biotechnology projects under development in the public research sector

  • serve researchers in collecting information about labs working on similar projects

  • create a tool that  is simple enough to facilitate scientist participation and has, at the same time, ample, and relevant information

  • provide easy access and accurate information to all parties interested in crop biotechnology, from policy makers, regulators or researchers to the general public

  • have an online database that is fully searchable by all users and kept up-to-date on a regular basis.

We need your input!

The success of this database will largely depend on the input data by researchers. We need your help to collect, add, and update our data in order to guarantee that the output is complete, comprehensible and useful to researchers. We invite you to actively participate in this effort which will benefit not only scientists but all stakeholders in the agricultural biotechnology sector.   

For the pdf file: PRRI-UCD Program


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