Key elements in a strategic approach to capacity building in the biosafety of genetically modified organisms*
Biosafety Unit, International Centre for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology (ICGEB), Padriciano 99, TS 34149, Italy
** Corresponding author: firstname.lastname@example.org
Accepted: 20 August 2010
In recent times, it has become imperative for countries to define and implement policy in biosafety due to the widespread adoption of genetically modified crops. As such, countries wishing to utilise transgenic technologies in the development of advanced agricultural products must have regulations in place coupled with trained personnel in national competent authorities able to contribute effectively to the decision-making process. Capacity building initiatives play an important role in supporting such individuals, institutions and governmental authorities by providing training and/or physical structures/equipment and technical assistance. There are many types of capacity building activities; however not all have the same relevance in different regions of the world. For capacity building to be effective, a strategic approach incorporating a variety of forms and disciplines is desired. This commentary discusses the importance of factors such as: the targeting of support to relevant beneficiary(ies); the identification of specific needs and the incorporation of socio-economic conditions when elaborating effective strategies designed to help building capacity. Moreover, the importance of interaction and collaboration amongst the various capacity builders is also discussed such that unnecessary duplication of efforts and best use of available human and economic resources results.
Key words: biosafety needs / capacity building / genetically modified organisms (GMOs) / decision-making
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