Biotechnology: The University-industrial Complex

Biotechnology: The University-industrial Complex

Paperback

By (author) Martin Kenney

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  • Publisher: Yale University Press
  • Format: Paperback | 328 pages
  • Dimensions: 152mm x 224mm x 24mm | 522g
  • Publication date: 10 September 1988
  • Publication City/Country: New Haven
  • ISBN 10: 0300042094
  • ISBN 13: 9780300042092
  • Edition: New edition
  • Edition statement: New edition
  • Illustrations note: black & white illustrations
  • Sales rank: 1,273,409

Product description

"Kenney's work is the first major effort to provide a detailed analysis of the birth of the new industrial field of biotechnology and its impact on universities...Kenney's book abounds in rich description and valuable conjectures. It also provides important insights into the structural and institutional aspects of the biotechnological revolution. It is informed by an extensive literature including reports from the financial community, university-industry contracts, trade journals, personal interviews, and company prospectuses."-Sheldon Krimsky, American Scientist "Probably never before has the emergence of a technology-based new industry been so exhaustive covered-while still in its gestation period...An excellent and very readable review."-S. Allen Heininger, Chemical and Engineering News "The author raises important questions about whether the character of this university-industrial complex adequately allows for the kind of public discussion and participation necessary to insure consideration of social, economic, and moral issues in the development of this important new technology."-Harvard Educational Review "A fine description of a vital new field. It deserves wide readership."-David Silbert & Duncan Neuhauser, Ph.D., New England Journal of Medicine

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Editorial reviews

A measured appraisal of the key role played by universities in the emergence of a US biotechnology industry (which has attracted $3 billion in venture capital in the past decade). Kenney (agricultural economics/Ohio State) also examines important issues raised by the increasing involvement of educational institutions in commercial enterprises. The productive employment of microorganisms and biological processes dates back to 6000 B.C. when the Babylonians fermented a kind of beer. But Kenney's focus is on the techniques with applications potential in agricultural, health care and the other mass markets that have emerged since the 1970's, primarily as a result of the 1953 discovery of DNA. He also reviews the wealth of ways in which the rush to exploit biotech has altered the character of research departments at universities and allied institutions. Among others, he probes the $70-million contract that binds Massachusetts General Hospital to Hoechst A.G., a West German multinational. Covered as well are instances in which attractive financial inducements have been used to recruit talented professors for start-up firms that aggressive Wall Streeters hope to take public. Kenney maintains that the campus/corporate connection is a risky business on several counts. For one, power of the purse allows sponsors to set the R&D agenda to programs promising near. term payouts; thus, some Faustian bargains have been struck with basic research the loser. Too, there's the good chance that chronically needy universities and faculty might be co-opted if not corrupted by industry. Kenney's dispassionate text will not put a conclusive end to the curiously muted debate now in progress, but it represents a valuable contribution to these vital proceedings. (Kirkus Reviews)

Back cover copy

In the first serious history of the biotechnology industry, Martin Kenney examines its growth and structure, describes the role of university departments of basic and applied biology, and shows how the relationship undermines the educational role of the university.