Open places: Research with biological material from abroad – International regulations and due diligence in research

The course will be held online. Registration (closes soon):—> Choose Plant Sciences to view and register for all currently offered PSC courses.

5 & 6 November 2020

Do you work with biological material from abroad? Do you know, how to correctly proceed with access and benefit sharing, material transferagreements and other procedures?

In this intensive 2-day training workshop with experts from the federal administration the focus is on your research examples and exemplifiedcase studies to demonstrate how to correctly proceed. The course is open to PhD students, postdoc fellows and PIs. Register now!

The circulation of samples of plants, animals, microorganisms is not a new phenomenon. Passing them on as seeds, plants, germplasm, dried specimens etc. has a long tradition among scientists. It spurred innovation and knowledge production for the benefit of global health, agriculture, conservation and sectors such as pharmaceuticals and biotechnology.

It also generated questions and concerns about ownership (e.g. intellectual property, patents) and the fair share of the benefits that result from the use of biological material. This triggered a complex international regulatory landscape for the governance of genetic resources.
Now, existing regulations on access, import and exchange of biological material and samples strongly affect academic research, even for purelynon-commercial purpose.

The course will provide solid knowledge on

  • correct and lawful access to genetic resources and benefit-sharing for academic research;
  • the multilateral system of the international plant treaty;
  • requirements for importing material under CITES and Swiss regulations; and
  • available support and counseling services for scientists in Switzerland.


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