Biotechnology is a rapidly developing sector of the economy for coun tries throughout the world. This rapid development has led to heated debate over its risks and benefits. Advocates of biotechnology point to the potential benefits offered by products that promise to elimi nate disease, provide for more efficient diagnostic techniques, treatments and drugs, yield increased food production, and so forth. Others fear that the rapid developments of this technology have occurred without appropriate consideration having been given to the ethical ramifications, the potential health risks and long-term envi ronmental impacts, implications for income distribution, and potential for abuse. Consumers and producers share concern for the future of biotechnology: the realities and even the perceptions, informed or otherwise. This book is the outcome of a research project on Biotechnology and the Consumer sponsored by the Office of Consumer Affairs of Industry Canada. The project was designed to foster informed public policy on biotechnology and in particular, to contribute to and inform the Canadian government's development of a Canadian Biotechnology Strategy. The Office funded a group of authors to prepare a series of analytical papers on a range of consumer and informational issues related to biotechnology. This project also involved an interim workshop in which the authors presented their papers, and culmi nated in a symposium on Biotechnology and the Consumer Interest, held on September 24-25, 1997, in Ottawa, Canada.
Introduction; B.M. Knoppers, A.D. Mathios. Consumers and Biotechnology: A Synopsis of Survey and Focus Group Research; H. Sheehy, et al. Consumers' Decision-Making and Risk Perceptions Regarding Foods Produced with Biotechnology: J. Wohl. The Market for Credible Information in Biotechnology; E. Einsiedel. An Overview of Public Consultation Mechanisms Developed to Address the Ethical and Social Issues Raised by Biotechnology; T. Leroux, et al. The Commercialization of Human Genetics: A Discussion of Issues Relevant to the Canadian Consumer; T. Caulfield. International Comparisons of Biotechnology Policies; Zhiqi Chen, A. McDermott. An Information-Based Approach to Labeling Biotechnology; G.K. Hadfield, D. Thomson. Economic Perspectives on the Dissemination of Science-Based Information to Consumers; A.D. Mathios. Using Advertising to Generate Information and Signals for Product Quality Lessons for Biotechnology Markets in Canada from Pharmaceutical Markets in the United States; A.N. Kleit. Biotechnology and the Media; S. Strauss. The Federal Biotechnology Regulatory System: A Commentary on an Institutional Work in Progress; G.B. Doern, H. Sheehy. The Industrial Economics of Biotechnology; C. Green. Biotechnological Innovation and Industrial Performance; C. Crampes, A. Hollander. Consumer Controversy and the Funding of Biotechnology Research; J.G. MacIntosh, D. Cumming. Appendix A: Integration Document. Biotechnology, the Consumer, and the Canadian Marketplace; M. Legault, et al. Appendix B: Rapporteur's Remarks. Symposium on Biotechnology and the Consumer; B. Purchase.
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