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Regulating Technology: International Harmonization and Local Realities Metabolism





Earthscan/ Routledge, London




Patrick van Zwanenberg, Adrian Ely and Adrian Smith




Regulating Technology: International Harmonization and Local Realities Metabolism


Year of Publication














Krishna B. Misra




Review Completed


The book consists of 8 chapters followed by preliminaries as given below:


List of Tables and Boxes

1 Page


1 Page

List of Abbreviations and Acronyms

2 Pages

Chapter 1


7 Pages

Chapter 2

Framing Regulations

21 Pages

Chapter 3

Harmonizing Regulation

21 Pages

Chapter 4

National Frameworks for Regulating Transgenic Cotton

21 Pages

Chapter 5

Local Realities for Transgenic Cotton

26 Pages

Chapter 6

National Frameworks for Regulating Antibiotics

14 Pages

Chapter 7

Local Realities for Antibiotics

16 Pages

Chapter 8

Rethinking Regulation

14 Pages


7 Pages


Technology has affected all facets of human activities but we must realize that no technology is without any risk to humans and environment that we live in. As the title of the book suggests, it is about regulating technology across different local settings within the interdependence and globalization of nations of the world. 9781849712477 - Regulating Technology: International Harmonization and Local RealitiesThis book is a part of a book series that addresses core challenges around linking science and technology and environmental sustainability with poverty reduction and social justice. Citing two examples, the book investigates aspects of technology use that operates beyond the purview of negotiations of international regulators sitting in Geneva, Paris, Washington or Rome. The book claims that it is product of research project on Rethinking Regulation that was conducted during 2007 to 2010 and was led by Social, Technological and Environmental Pathways to Sustainability (STEPS) Centre of University of Sussex, which usually acts as a hub for wide range of international research projects.

The project comprised of two separate research teams for the projects conducted in Chaco province of Argentina and the other in Hubei province in China. The case studies selected in the book represent three important areas, viz, health, agriculture and water and demonstrates how important technologies impact on the welfare and sustainability in many ways and highlight the controversies surround regulation and use. In case of Chaco province in Argentina, the cotton produced there is mostly genetically modified and uses new insect resistant and herbicide tolerant seeds. However, with no cash and credit access to poor farmers, copied versions of the new varieties from local cooperatives and other sources. Therefore poor farmers are not getting the benefit of new technology and incur certain kind of risks as the levels of insecticidal toxin in the copied versions being low and sometimes without biosafety approval. In case of Hubei province in China, which has a booming pharmaceutical industry, the book highlights that risk to human health is high as people have access to wide range of drugs and if someone falls ill he/she is prescribed newer version of antibiotics even for common ailments. The book therefore emphasizes that there is urgent need to harmonize regulatory policies across the world which sometimes is at odds with the increasingly diverse local settings in which they are implemented.


This review has been published in IJPE volume 10, number 6, 2014

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