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Home > News > Tackling 21st-Century Tech Risks

February 3rd, 2012

Tackling 21st-Century Tech Risks

Abstract:
Take the case of nanotech. The last three presidential administrations have supported a National Nanotechnology Initiative (NNI) that has invested $14 billion in research since 2001 to speed the development of materials and devices with novel and valuable electronic, chemical, mechanical, and optical properties. At the same time, however -- recognizing that public and business confidence in nano products could be threatened without good evidence of safety--the federal government, at the urging of the president's science advisors, significantly increased research on the health and environmental implications of nanotechnology. The idea is to gain information while an industry is still young to avoid unnecessary, knee-jerk, and obstructive regulation later on. Along the same lines, in December the administration announced that it will develop a National Bioeconomy Blueprint, including "regulatory reforms that will reduce unnecessary burdens and impediments while protecting health and safety." In another example, the human research oversight system is now being revised to concentrate oversight resources on the riskiest studies.

Source:
huffingtonpost.com

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