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Franziska Von Verschuer

Short Vita
Franziska studied Sociology and Psychology in Freiburg and Frankfurt am Main. She is a Research Associate in the ‚Biotechnologies, Nature and Society‘ Research Group in the Faculty of Social Sciences at Goethe University Frankfurt am Main. Her research interests include environmental and post-anthropocentric sociology, biotechnologies, and biopolitics, as well as feminist and decolonial theory and STS. Currently, she is working on her Ph.D. thesis, which focuses on techno-scientific solutionism in the face of ecological crises, exemplarily investigating seed conservation against biodiversity loss.

Project Description
My Ph.D. research is an inquiry into the conservation of agricultural biodiversity in seed banks as an approach to solving the socio-ecological problems connected to the increasing loss of plant genetic diversity. My study focuses on the Svalbard Global Seed Vault as a nodal point of global ex-situ conservation efforts. Based on ethnographic research and expert interviews, I explore the rationalities and more-than-human relationalities that make the world of agrobiodiversity conservation. I bring seed banking into view as not merely a technoscientific promise of future abundance in the face of loss, but as a technoscientific mode of world-making, of negotiating futurity between the poles of caring for and governing naturecultures. The theoretical environment that my research is situated in and contributes to ranges from post-anthropocentric approaches in sociology and debates on political ecology to feminist and decolonial science and technology studies.