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Regulating Accountability And Transparency In China'S Dairy Industry


<p>Dr. Megan Tracy of James Madison University will conduct research on the effects of the melamine poisoning scandal in China's dairy industry in 2008, focusing on the scandal's aftermath in order to understand how industry actors, regulatory agencies, transnational organizations, and food safety advocates have attempted to implement regulatory and transparency norms. Ethnographic research in China will be used to document the role transparency plays in global regulatory processes. The research will also examine how individuals, motivated by global scandals and the pressure to prevent future incidents, transmit and transform food safety regulations and best practices across international borders. The research will trace the chain of actors involved in producing and monitoring food safety in China's dairy industry and will consider how and why various technical practices are chosen, as well as how diverse techniques become marked as fulfilling transparency and accountability demands. The project will employ a range of social science research methods, including modified participant observation, interviews, and the collection and analysis of documentary practices. Field research will take place across a variety of sites, including corporate campuses, processing plants, factory farms, and industry-sponsored events. Food safety scandals raise questions about complex and globalized food production and distribution systems, the impact on consumer health and well-being, and the global governance of food and health risks. Results of the project will increase knowledge of the transmission of food safety standards and contribute to public discussions about food safety and security in the U.S. and China, resulting in greater opportunities for improved food safety. The project will also strengthen interdisciplinary partnerships between U.S. and Chinese researchers and present opportunities for the mentoring of U.S. and Chinese students.</p>

Tracy, Megan E
James Madison University
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