Chapter 11: Biotechnology Appropriation in a Small Country: From Historical Legacies to Contemporary Challenges in Latvia
Anda Adamsone-Fiskovica, Janis Kristapsons, Aija Lulle and Erika Tjunina INTRODUCTION Biotechnology is one of the keywords for the twenty-first century with research and applications of the results currently being promoted and advanced intensively all over the world. While the evolution of this field can be traced back to a more distant past, its upsurge has been more marked since the second half of the twentieth century, both in terms of research and policy developments, with the process frequently being referred to as a ‘biotechnology revolution’ (e.g. Russell, 1988). Nowadays biotechnology is among the key priorities in the field of scientific and technological development worldwide, exerting an impact first and foremost on agriculture, food science, and modern medicine. The Strategy for Europe on Life Sciences and Biotechnology 2002–2010 elaborated by the European Commission (EC) states that ‘life sciences and biotechnology are widely recognised to be, after information technology, the next wave of the knowledge-based economy, creating new opportunities for our societies and economies’ (EC, 2002, p. 7). Along with food and agriculture, biotechnology is defined as one among nine thematic priorities for collaborative research within the European Union (EU) 7th Framework Programme (FP) for 2007–2013 (EC, 2006, p. 4). However, prior to that it had been argued that Europe does not have a unified biotechnology policy in place yet, whereby policy-makers in individual European countries have developed a variety of different policy concepts and instruments with the goal of fostering innovation in biotechnology (Caracostas and Brichard, 2004, p. 342)...
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