Since receiving a BS in Animal Science from Cornell University in 2014, I’ve completed my first year of a PhD in Science & Technology Studies (STS) at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. My research considers how agricultural biotechnologists are deliberate, ethical actors navigating both a complex regulatory structure and increasing public concern about genetic engineering. The case of the American Chestnut Research and Restoration Project has become my entry point into considering this question. My (1) exposure to biotechnological development at Cornell, (2) involvement with science and technology policy as an intern in Washington, D.C., (3) engagement with the agricultural biotechnology community through various writing positions and online engagement—and now with the Cornell Alliance for Science, (4) on-farm agricultural experience, and (5) my academic work have given me the standpoint necessary to appreciate not only the need for this technology, but also the need for re-envisioning how its use is communicated, and its risk regulated.
I can be found on Twitter @_beccaharrison.