NanoEthics

http://link.springer.com/journal/11569

List of Papers (Total 83)

“Just Carbon”: Ideas About Graphene Risks by Graphene Researchers and Innovation Advisors

Graphene is a nanomaterial with many promising and innovative applications, yet early studies indicate that graphene may pose risks to humans and the environment. According to ideas of responsible research and innovation, all relevant actors should strive to reduce risks related to technological innovations. Through semi-structured interviews, we investigated the idea of graphene...

Frame Reflection Lab: a Playful Method for Frame Reflection on Synthetic Biology

Synthetic biology is an emerging technology that asks for inclusive reflection on how people frame the field. To unravel how we can facilitate such reflection, this study evaluates the Frame Reflection Lab (FRL). Building upon playfulness design principles, the FRL comprises a workshop with video-narratives and co-creative group exercises. We studied how the FRL facilitated frame...

The Power of Analogies for Imagining and Governing Emerging Technologies

The emergence of new technologies regularly involves comparisons with previous innovations. For instance, analogies with asbestos and genetically modified organisms have played a crucial role in the early societal debate about nanotechnology. This article explores the power of analogies in such debates and how they could be effectively and responsibly employed for imagining and...

Nanoparticle Risks and Identification in a World Where Small Things Do Not Survive

The risks of materials containing nanoscale components are in the public debate discussed as if a manufactured nanomaterial will remain invariant with time and environmental exposure, and as if we can identify its risks by the risks of its nanoscale components. Additionally, the debate on mitigation of specific nanorisks by new legislation implicitly assumes that we can have full...

Saved by Design? The Case of Legal Protection by Design

This discussion note does three things: (1) it explains the notion of ‘legal protection by design’ in relation to data-driven infrastructures that form the backbone of our new ‘onlife world’, (2) it explains how the notion of ‘by design’ relates to the relational nature of what an environment affords its inhabitants, referring to the work of James Gibson, and (3) it explains how...

Safe-by-Design: from Safety to Responsibility

Safe-by-design (SbD) aims at addressing safety issues already during the R&D and design phases of new technologies. SbD has increasingly become popular in the last few years for addressing the risks of emerging technologies like nanotechnology and synthetic biology. We ask to what extent SbD approaches can deal with uncertainty, in particular with indeterminacy, i.e., the fact...

Scientists’ Understandings of Risk of Nanomaterials: Disciplinary Culture Through the Ethnographic Lens

There is a growing literature on how scientific experts understand risk of technology related to their disciplinary field. Previous research shows that experts have different understandings and perspectives depending on disciplinary culture, organizational affiliation, and how they more broadly look upon their role in society. From a practice-based perspective on risk management...

Nanoethics, Science Communication, and a Fourth Model for Public Engagement

This paper develops a fourth model of public engagement with science, grounded in the principle of nurturing scientific agency through participatory bioethics. It argues that social media is an effective device through which to enable such engagement, as it has the capacity to empower users and transforms audiences into co-producers of knowledge, rather than consumers of content...

Reflection as a Deliberative and Distributed Practice: Assessing Neuro-Enhancement Technologies via Mutual Learning Exercises (MLEs)

In 1968, Jürgen Habermas claimed that, in an advanced technological society, the emancipatory force of knowledge can only be regained by actively recovering the ‘forgotten experience of reflection’. In this article, we argue that, in the contemporary situation, critical reflection requires a deliberative ambiance, a process of mutual learning, a consciously organised process of...

The Vision of “Industrie 4.0” in the Making—a Case of Future Told, Tamed, and Traded

Since industrial trade fair Hannover Messe 2011, the term “Industrie 4.0” has ignited a vision of a new Industrial Revolution and has been inspiring a lively, ongoing debate among the German public about the future of work, and hence society, ever since. The discourse around this vision of the future eventually spread to other countries, with public awareness reaching a temporary...

A Lay Ethics Quest for Technological Futures: About Tradition, Narrative and Decision-Making

Making better choices about future technologies that are being researched or developed is an important motivator behind lay ethics interventions. However, in practice, they do not always succeed to serve that goal. Especially authors who have noted that lay ethicists sometimes take recourse to well-known themes which stem from old, even ‘archetypical’ stories, have been...

Responsible, Inclusive Innovation and the Nano-Divide

Policy makers from around the world are trying to emulate successful innovation systems in order to support economic growth. At the same time, innovation governance systems are being put in place to ensure a better integration of stakeholder views into the research and development process. In Europe, one of the most prominent and newly emerging governance frameworks is called...

Informed Consent in Asymmetrical Relationships: an Investigation into Relational Factors that Influence Room for Reflection

In recent years, informed consent has been suggested as a way to deal with risks posed by engineered nanomaterials. We argue that while we can learn from experiences with informed consent in treatment and research contexts, we should be aware that informed consent traditionally pertains to certain features of the relationships between doctors and patients and researchers and...

Exploring Political Views on Synthetic Biology in the Netherlands

Synthetic biology may be an important source of progress as well as societal and political conflict. Against this backdrop, several technology assessment organizations have been seeking to contribute to timely societal and political opinion-making on synthetic biology. The Rathenau Instituut, based in the Netherlands, is one of these organizations. In 2011, the institute...