CALL FOR PAPERS – Ethical Issues in New Agricultural Biotechnology

We invite submissions for the Mistra Biotech workshop on ethical issues in new biotechnology in agriculture which is to be held in Uppsala, Sweden, Wednesday 11th September 2013.

The format for this one-day workshop involves four invited speakers plus selected submitted papers. We aim at intensive discussions and exchange on current ethical issues in biotechnology between scholars from the fields of e.g. philosophy, agrarian sciences, economics, ethics, political science, or sociology.

Confirmed keynote speakers

Potential topics include ethical issues prompted by:

  • Biotechnologically developed crops are no longer solely focused on agronomic traits (like Bt or herbicide tolerance), but also on allegedly environmentally beneficial characteristics or purported consumer health benefits. See for instance the news clip on the ‘Low GI potato’ (in Swedish with English subtitles)
  • New technologies make it unclear what is to count as a genetically modified organism, both legally and ontologically.
  • Nature and naturalness are still important categories in the discussions about agriculture and ethics. Relatedly, the organic farming movement is ambivalent towards biotechnology, with some regarding it as a possibility and others as a (mere) threat.

Space is limited and we will therefore accept only a small number of submissions. However, the speakers whose papers are selected for the workshop will have their costs covered by the workshop organizers. As an outcome of the workshop, we plan to submit edited versions of contributions to a suitable journal for publication.

We ask prospective participants to submit draft papers of no more than 3,000 including an abstract of 150 words. The time allocated for oral presentation of the contributions is 20 minutes excluding discussion. Please not that we are not asking for finalized papers, but substantial drafts, i.e. not mere abstracts.

Contributions should be sent via e-mail to:
The deadline for submitting contributions is Friday 3d May.
Notifications to authors will be sent out no later than June 1st.

If you have any questions regarding submissions, if you want to discuss topics suitable topics informally, or if you have queries about the workshop in general, please contact Per Sandin (addresses below). If you wish to attend the workshop without presenting, you are most welcome. The workshop is free of charge but pre-registration is necessary.

MistraTopp_web960Mistra Biotech is an interdisciplinary research program focusing on use of biotechnology for sustainable and competitive agriculture and food systems. The program started in 2013 and is funded by The Swedish Foundation for Strategic Environmental Research (Mistra) and the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences (SLU).

The workshop is a satellite event to the EurSafe Congress (European Society for Agricultural and Food Ethics), which runs in Uppsala between 11 and 14 September 2013, hosted by the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences (SLU). This year’s conference theme is “The Ethics of Consumption”.

Per Sandin (workshop convener)
Senior Lecturer in Bioethics and Environmental Ethics
Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Uppsala
Dept of Crop Production Ecology
P.O. Box 7043
SE-75007 Uppsala, Sweden
Phone +46(0)18673342