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Busch, Lawrence

429A Berkey Hall
Michigan State University
East Lansing, MI 48824

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Web Sites:
Center for the Study of Standards in Society

Lawrence Busch

University Distinguished Professor

Lawrence Busch is University Distinguished Professor of Sociology at Michigan State University.  He has been on the faculty at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology, Lancaster University (UK), and what is now the Institut de Recherche pour le Développement (IRD).

He is (co)author or (co)editor of fourteen books including Plants, Power and Profit: Social, Economic, and Ethical Consequences of the New Biotechnologies (Blackwell, 1991), Toward a New Political Economy of Agriculture (Westview, 1991), From Columbus to Conagra: The Globalization of Agriculture (University of Kansas Press, 1994), Making Nature, Shaping Culture: Plant Biodiversity in Global Context, (University of Nebraska Press, 1995), The Eclipse of Morality: Science, State and Market, (Aldine DeGruyter, 2000), Agricultural Standards: The Shape Of The Global Food And Fiber System,(Springer, 2006),  Universities in the Age of Corporate Science: The UC Berkeley–Novartis Controversy, (Temple University Press, 2007), Standards:  Recipes for Reality (MIT Press, 2011). Le Marché aux Connaissances (Quae, 2014) and the Handbook of the International Political Economy of Agriculture and Food. (Edward Elgar. 2015). He has also authored or coauthored more than 150 other publications.

He is past president of both the Rural Sociological Society and the Agriculture, Food, and Human Values Society, a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, a Chevalier de l’Ordre du Mérite Agricole and an elected member of the Académie d’Agriculture de France. He recently received a doctor honoris causa from the Universidade Técnica de Lisboa.

Dr. Busch's current interests include the use of standards in public and private policy making, biotechnology and nanotechnology policy, agricultural science and technology policy, higher education in agriculture, and public participation in the policy process and the consequences of neoliberal policies for democratic governance.

Research Interests

  • Domestic and International food and agricultural standards, democratic governance, globalizations.

Areas of Specialization: Environment

Selected Publications

Busch, L. 2014. “Governance in the age of global markets: challenges, limits, and consequences,” Agriculture and Human Values, 31: 513-523.

Busch, L. 2014. “A Dozen Ways to Get Lost in Translation: Inherent Challenges in Large-Scale Data Sets, International Journal of Communication, 8:1727-1744.

Busch, L. 2015. “Individual Choice and Social Values: Choice in the Agrifood Sector,” Journal of Consumer Culture, online first.

Recent Publications

Ten Eyck Toby A. And Lawrence Busch.  2012.  “Justifying the Critique: Following the lead of Clement Greenberg and Michael Kimmelman” Cultural Sociology 6(2):239-253.

2012 The Tripartite Standards Regime. In "The Wiley-Blackwell Encyclopedia of Globalization' (Allison Loconto, lead, with J. Stone & L. Busch; G. Ritzer, ed.) Vol. 4:2044-2051. Hoboken, NJ: George Wiley & Sons

More Publications

Awards and Honors

Honorary Doctorate from the Technical University of Lisbon, 2009

Elected member of the Academie d'Agriculture de France, 2008-Present

Ralph Smuckler Award for Advancing International Studies, 2004

Chevalier de l’Ordre du Mérite Agricol, 2001-Present

Fellow, American Association for the Advancement of Science