In this chapter we aim to give an overview of the main societal and ethical issues that are currently voiced around industrial biotechnology. We will illustrate this with some recent cases, such as the development of synthetic artemisinin, synthetic vanillin and vegetable oil produced by engineered algae. We show that current societal and ethical issues in industrial biotechnology centre on the following five themes: sustainability, naturalness, innovation trajectories, risk management and economic justice. In each of these themes, clashing public opinions fuel the public debate on the acceptability of new industrial biotechnology. In some cases this has led to the failure of otherwise promising innovations. In the last part, we provide suggestions on how to deal with these ethical and societal aspects based on the approach of Responsible Research and Innovation (RRI).
|Title of host publication||Sustainability and Life Cycle Assessment in Industrial Biotechnology|
|Editors||Magnus Fröhling, Michael Hiete|
|Publication status||Published - 2019|
|Name||Advances in Biochemical Engineering/Biotechnology|
- Economic justice
- Ethical and social issues
- Responsible research and innovation