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Phase One

Phase Two




Constructive Conversations

Constructive Conversations is a six-year research project (2003-2008) involving researchers from four New Zealand universities. Its goal is to enable improved risk-assessment decisions and decision-processes for a range of biotechnologies. The project will investigate in detail 1/ genetic testing and biobanking; 2/ plant biopharming; 3/ animal biopharming; and 4/ nutrigenomics and functional food. It will develop methods for eliciting the diverse range and types of knowledge relevant to the assessment of these and other technologies.

Constructive Conversations: Korero Whakaaetanga is funded by the Foundation for Research, Science and Technology (FRST), and based at the School of Social and Political Science at the University of Canterbury .

The Project Leader is Dr Joanna Goven.

Phase One of the project, focusing on genetic testing, is now complete.
>> Click here for the phase one website .

Phase Two of Constructive Conversations is now underway. Phase Two encompasses two research streams and several substreams.

The first stream, which is the major focus of Phase Two, will carry out a transdisciplinary assessment of biopharming technologies in order to identify key regulatory and governance needs and implications. It does this chiefly by identifying, eliciting and analysing widely distributed knowledges relevant to the risk assessment of plant and animal biopharming and functional foods. The work is organised into the following substreams: plant biopharming; nutrigenomics and functional food; marine biopharming and Maori; biopharming in land-based animal production; and aquaculture and biopharming.

The second stream extends some of the research done in Phase One on genetic testing by investigating how health benefits and cultural concerns about genetic research, genetic testing and biobanking are balanced by particular Maori communities.

Please click on the links below to learn more about these research streams:

>> Biopharming

>> Maori and Genetics: Health Benefits and Cultural Concerns