Document Detail

Precautionary approaches to the appraisal of risk: a case study of a genetically modified crop.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  11114123     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
There are strong scientific reasons for holding the broader scope of precautionary approaches to be more consistent with the scientific foundations of rational choice and probability theory than are conventional narrow risk-assessment techniques. The imperatives both of science and precaution can be seen to pull in the same direction. The regulatory appraisal of risk should become more systematic and broader in scope. In particular, a set of criteria can be developed concerning the need for greater humility, completeness, transparency, and participation in regulatory appraisal, with specific attention to the comparison of different options (including mixtures of options), the consideration of benefits and justifications, and the systematic "mapping" of the ways in which different framing assumptions lead to different pictures of performance. A case study of a pilot exercise applying a multi-criteria mapping method to the regulatory appraisal of a genetically modified crop is reported. The results are more complete than orthodox risk assessment, in that they embody consideration of an unlimited array of issues and include consideration of a wide range of different strategic alternatives to the use of GM technologies. It is concluded that conventional regulatory appraisal might be adapted to better address the imperatives of both science and precaution.
A Stirling; S Mayer
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article    
Journal Detail:
Title:  International journal of occupational and environmental health     Volume:  6     ISSN:  1077-3525     ISO Abbreviation:  Int J Occup Environ Health     Publication Date:    2000 Oct-Dec
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2000-12-20     Completed Date:  2001-02-08     Revised Date:  2007-11-06    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  9505217     Medline TA:  Int J Occup Environ Health     Country:  United States    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  296-311     Citation Subset:  IM    
SPRU--Science and Technology, Policy Research, University of Sussex, Brighton, United Kingdom.
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MeSH Terms
Consumer Product Safety
Crops, Agricultural / genetics*,  standards
Decision Support Techniques*
Environmental Health / standards*
Genetic Engineering
Interinstitutional Relations
Pilot Projects
Risk Assessment*
Technology Assessment, Biomedical / methods*

From MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine

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