Monica Racovita

Postdoctoral Research Fellow

Faculty:Faculty of Science and Engineering

Location: Cambridge

Areas of Expertise: Consumption and change

Monica is an interdisciplinary social scientist with a research core focus on bioeconomy and its links with Responsible Research and Innovation, sustainability, and international development. Monica is currently employed on the EU-funded Responsible Research and Innovation Networking Globally (RRING) project, which the GSI is a partner on. 


Monica joined the GSI in August 2018. Previously she was a post-doctoral researcher at STS – Institute of Science, Technology and Society Studies at Alpen-Adria-Universität, Austria, where she worked on various EU or UN funded projects: on fostering a transition towards Responsible Research and Innovation systems; setting the base for a GMO (genetically modified organisms) research ERA-NET; the assessment of genetically modified crops (stakeholder engagement; scientific controversies; feasibility of long-term feeding studies; health, environmental and socio-economic impacts); and biosafety capacity building exercises in the Caribbean region.  

Before that she was a post-doctoral fellow at ICGEB (International Centre for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology), Trieste, Italy, Biosafety Unit, where she coordinated a systematic review on the non-food health impacts of GMO cultivation.

Monica has a mixed academic background: a medical bioengineer at the end of her undergraduate studies, she then obtained a master in applied chemistry and biotechnology with a thesis on HIV/MLV retroviral gene integration. For her PhD she pursued a degree in Global Studies, at Doshisha University, Kyoto, Japan (thesis: “Policies of Genetically Modified Crops in India: Food Security and Biosafety Politics”).

Spoken Languages

English, Romanian, Italian, French, Spanish, Japanese (conversational), German (beginner)

Research interests

  • Responsible Research and Innovation
  • Biotechnology assessment, with particular focus on genetically modified crops and gene editing
  • Biotechnology regulatory frameworks
  • The application of the systematic review methodology to assess the impact of policy interventions
  • Stakeholder engagement and participation
  • Science communication
  • Food security


PhD, Global Social Studies, Doshisha University, Kyoto, Japan

MEng, Applied Chemistry and Biotechnology, Nagoya University, Nagoya, Japan

Bioeng, Medicine, University of Medicine and Pharmacy, Iasi, Romania

Selected recent publications

Spök, A., Racovita, M., Karner, S., Adduci, G., Smets, G., Rüdelsheim, P., Kohl, C., Wilhelm, R. and Schiemann, J., 2018. Inclusive development and prioritization of review questions in a highly controversial field of regulatory science. Environmental Evidence, 7(1), p.1.

Racovita, M., 2017. Being Scientific about Socio-Economics in GMO Decision-Making in Developing Countries. In A. Adenle, E. Morris, & D. Murphy Genetically Modified Organisms in Developing Countries: Risk Analysis and Governance, p.103-114, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Racovita, M., Obonyo, D.N., Craig, W. and Ripandelli, D., 2015. What are the non-food impacts of GM crop cultivation on farmers’ health?. Environmental Evidence, 4(1), p.17.

Obonyo, D.N., Racovita, M., Ripandelli, D. And Craig, W., 2014. Biosafety issues in food and agricultural systems in Africa. In DP Keetch, D Makinde, CK Weebadde, K Maredia Biosafety in Africa, pp.6-15, Michigan State University.

Racovita, M., 2013. Lost in translation: Scientists need to adapt to a postmodern world; constructivism can offer a way. EMBO reports, 14(8), pp.675-678.

Racovita, M., Obonyo, D.N., Abdallah, R., Anguzu, R., Bamwenda, G., Kiggundu, A., Maganga, H., Muchiri, N., Nzeduru, C., Otadoh, J. and Rumjaun, A., 2013. Experiences in sub-Saharan Africa with GM crop risk communication: outcome of a workshop. GM crops & food, 4(1), pp.19-27.

Tepfer, M., Racovita, M. and Craig, W., 2013. Putting problem formulation at the forefront of GMO risk analysis. GM crops & food, 4(1), pp.10-15.