This chapter explores how the social construction of knowledge and the structuring of inequalities - issues of major concern in the sociology of scientific knowledge and in development studies, respectively - underlie the practical question of how to compose expert committees for science advice in the United Nations system. The main focus is on international groups of science advisors that meet to develop biotechnology regulation, especially in the FAO and UNEP. It is argued that problems of such advisory groups couched in terms of their lack of expertise, obscure problems related to the notion of 'absentee expertise', i.e. expertise which, detached from local contexts, prepares future regulatory frameworks.
Owing to copyright restrictions, only the first 3 pages are attached, together with a link to the book at Zed Books.
Jansen, K.; Roquas, E. Absentee expertise: science advice for biotechnology regulation in developing countries. In: Science and Citizens: Globalization and the challenge of Engagement. Zed Books, London, (2005) ISBN 9781842775516