Postgraduate course “Biosafety in Plant Biotechnology”

This international e-learning course is organized in cooperation with UNIDO as part of their e-Biosafety network and aims at training scientists and law specialists in biosafety expertise and evaluation both at governmental and industrial level.

The course combines distance learning with on campus training at Ghent University.

The one year program, consisting of 8 modules, offers a solid base to set up and implement regulatory biosafety frameworks related to plant biotechnology, and assist in legislation and interpretation of biosafety risk assessment, risk management and communication to policymakers or the public.


This postgraduate course aims to provide students with:

1. Expert information on current and potential future developments in biotechnology

2. Expert information on national and international norms and regulations in biotechnology

3. Advanced skills to conduct risk assessments and apply risk management in biotechnology

4. Risk communication skills

At the end of the course, participants will be able to conduct risk assessments and apply risk management options, while at the same time deal with public policy issues at the interface of science, government, industry, and civil society.


The program includes an introductory section on plant biotechnology and its applications for agriculture and industry. The main core covers the basics of risk assessment and regulatory structures, food and feed safety assessment, and environmental safety assessment. An overview of national and international regulatory systems is included. The final section deals with risk perception and communication.

The course is an e-learning course complemented with one on campus sessions at Ghent University, Belgium. This first on campus session is mandatory to attend.

Postgraduate certificate

The Certificate is suitable for individuals engaged as biosafety professionals in government agencies or industry. It is also tailored for individuals with an interest in public policy, legal and ethical aspects of biotechnology.


  • Holder of one of the following diplomas: M.Sc in Biology, Chemistry, Biochemistry and Biotechnology, Bio-engineering Sciences, Master in Medicine, Master in Law, Master degrees with a qualification similar to the above mentioned degrees, not attributed at Ghent University
  • Evidence of a good knowledge of English, written and spoken
  • Minimum number of participants: 5, the maximum number of participants: 25
  • Tuition fee: 1730 €
  • Ghent University expects that students dispose of substantial financial and material means to support themselves for the complete duration of their stay as a student and therefore does not give financial nor material aid.

Technologiepark 122
B-9052 Zwijnaarde

Contact:; +32 9 292 80 41