Prof. mr. drs. Piet van der Meer

Piet van der Meer is trained as a biologist and a lawyer at the University of Leiden, the Netherlands, with specialisations in microbiology and ecology, as well as in environmental and international law.

From 1986 until 1999, he was in charge of biosafety regulation in the Netherlands, heading a team of legal and scientific professionals that handled requests for contained use, field trials and placing on the market of genetically modified organisms.  During this time he was closely involved in the development and revision of the EC Directives on GMOs, and he participated on behalf of the Netherlands in many international fora, such as the OECD, Council of Europe, the Convention on Biological Diversity, the Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety, the Biological Weapons Convention, and acted as chair in many of these fora. He also provided frequent training on the legal and scientific aspects of biosafety regulations and risk assessment in many developing countries and countries with economies in transition.

From 1999 to 2002, Piet van der Meer managed the capacity building project “Implementation of National Biosafety Frameworks of the pre-accession countries in Central and Eastern Europe”, aimed at laying a firm foundation for the development of national biosafety frameworks consistent international and EU obligations.

From December 2002 to May 2004 he served as programme manager of the UNEP-GEF projects on Implementation of National Biosafety Frameworks, aimed at assisting participating countries in establishing and implementing workable and transparent national biosafety systems.

Since August 2004 Piet van der Meer is the principle of the Belgium based consultancy Horizons sprl, which offers consulting in the fields of international environmental agreements, national policies and legislation related to environmental protection and sustainable development, and with a particular specialisation on biotechnology regulation. Horizons main clients are Governments and international organisations. In this capacity, Piet van der Meer also provides support to the Public Research and Regulation Initiative (PRRI), which provides a forum for public researchers to be informed about and involved in international regulations and policies pertaining to modern biotechnology (see

Piet van der Meer is connected to the  UGent Law School on a voluntary basis and he is a guest professor, teaching Safety in Plant Biotechnology at the Faculty of Science.

Contact details and Bibliography Piet van der Meer