Nanotechnology Now

Our NanoNews Digest Sponsors

Heifer International

Wikipedia Affiliate Button

Home > Press > Durnham University's DEEPEN project comes to a close

Abstract:
The recently concluded three-year DEEPEN project, organized by Durham University in the UK and funded by the European Commission, aimed to clarify some of the ethical and moral implications of further research on the topic of nanotechnology. Breaking new ground, the project's final report constitutes the summation of the work of the past few years. A clear directive was brought forward by DEEPEN's contributing researchers - including Professor Phil Macnaghten and Dr. Matthew Kearnes of Durham University's Institute for Hazard and Risk Research - and its message is intended for any nanotechnology researchers working today: get a strong ethical stance sorted before moving any further.

Durnham University's DEEPEN project comes to a close

Durnham, UK | Posted on September 26th, 2012

The worries and anxieties discussed in this report centered mainly around the fact that nanotechnology research is moving at an extremely rapid rate. There is a sense of "impending disaster" borne out of a loss of surety over what is "means to be human" and the consequences for "loss of personal identity". While there was a general acceptance that research in nanotechnology had a strong future financially - with global funding over 1200 percent higher than it was in 1995 - there was a concern that "hype" over the research topic was hindering "productive knowledge transfer".
All was not grim, however. The project highlighted some important positive aspects to nanotechnology research, including the potential for enormous and scalable advances in medical and diagnostic sciences. There was also general goodwill towards the possibility of nanotechnology playing a major role in improving individuals' quality of life in a more liberal sense, as well as the opportunities the science could afford energy systems research.
The report mentioned that DEEPEN participants' predictions of the future tended to be "dystopic" unless a greater focus on public good was imposed. Participants were often concerned that over-focus on consumer goods would be a natural extension of academic research in nanotechnology, and this could heighten the rich/poor divide in certain societies. Despite these concerns, there was a consensus that drawing up a list of recommendations for approaching the management of global nanotechnology research may "underestimate the complexity" of research government.
The news about consumer goods is of particular note to manufacturers in the technology industry, who are seeking the kinds of advances that nanotechnology could afford. Many manufacturers are approaching sustainability and social responsibility as central to their mission. Dell titled their FY 2011 sustainability report ‘It's Good Business to Do Good', and they are focusing on manufacturing a variety of products like all in one computers that save consumers energy, space, and money. Lenovo highlighted issues of sustainability and in their FY 2011 report ‘Doers make the world better'. Indeed, Lenovo recently appointed a Senior Vice President, Peter Hortensius, as chief sustainability executive, and Dell was named Newsweek's 2010 Greenest Company in America. This kind of practice could provide an antidote to the dystopic predictions of the DEEPEN project; by focussing on the wider global impact of any consumer brand, values can be aligned with those in the ‘public' - or here, ‘academic' - sector. This way, the research drive for enhancement of consumer products need not interfere with the tremendous prospects for nanotechnology in the medical and diagnostic sectors.

####

For more information, please click here

Contacts:
Natalie Smith

Copyright © University of Durnham

If you have a comment, please Contact us.

Issuers of news releases, not 7th Wave, Inc. or Nanotechnology Now, are solely responsible for the accuracy of the content.

Bookmark:
Delicious Digg Newsvine Google Yahoo Reddit Magnoliacom Furl Facebook

Related News Press

News and information

Ultracold atom waves may shed light on rogue ocean killers: Rice quantum experiments probe underlying physics of rogue ocean waves April 27th, 2017

Looking for the quantum frontier: Beyond classical computing without fault-tolerance? April 27th, 2017

Metal nanoparticles induced visible-light photocatalysis: Mechanisms, applications, ways of promoting catalytic activity and outlook April 27th, 2017

Arrowhead Pharmaceuticals to Webcast Fiscal 2017 Second Quarter Results April 27th, 2017

Ethics

Iran to hold intl. school on application of nanomaterials in medicine September 20th, 2016

Synthetic biology needs robust safety mechanisms before real world application: Ethics and technology hold the key to the success of synthetic biology September 17th, 2015

March 2016; 6th Int'l Conference on Nanostructures in Iran July 29th, 2015

PETA science consortium to present at Society for Risk Analysis meeting December 10th, 2014

Preparing for Nano

How nanoscience will improve our health and lives in the coming years: Targeted medicine deliveries and increased energy efficiency are just two of many ways October 26th, 2016

Searching for a nanotech self-organizing principle May 1st, 2016

Nanotechnology is changing everything from medicine to self-healing buildings: Nanotechnology is so small it's measured in billionths of metres, and it is revolutionising every aspect of our lives April 2nd, 2016

Technical Seminar at ANFoS 2012 August 22nd, 2012

Govt.-Legislation/Regulation/Funding/Policy

Ultracold atom waves may shed light on rogue ocean killers: Rice quantum experiments probe underlying physics of rogue ocean waves April 27th, 2017

Metal nanoparticles induced visible-light photocatalysis: Mechanisms, applications, ways of promoting catalytic activity and outlook April 27th, 2017

Graphene holds up under high pressure: Used in filtration membranes, ultrathin material could help make desalination more productive April 24th, 2017

Nanoparticle vaccine shows potential as immunotherapy to fight multiple cancer types April 24th, 2017

Possible Futures

Looking for the quantum frontier: Beyond classical computing without fault-tolerance? April 27th, 2017

Video captures bubble-blowing battery in action: Researchers propose how bubbles form, could lead to smaller lithium-air batteries April 26th, 2017

California Research Alliance by BASF establishes more than 25 research projects in three years April 26th, 2017

Geoffrey Beach: Drawn to explore magnetism: Materials researcher is working on the magnetic memory of the future April 25th, 2017

Academic/Education

California Research Alliance by BASF establishes more than 25 research projects in three years April 26th, 2017

SUNY Polytechnic Institute Announces Total of 172 Teams Selected to Compete in Solar in Your Community Challenge: Teams from 40 states, plus Washington, DC, 2 Territories, and 4 American Indian Reservations, Will Deploy Solar in Underserved Communities April 20th, 2017

Rice crew revved for Nanocar Race: Nanocar creator James Tour and team take on international competition with single-molecule marvel April 20th, 2017

The Catholic University of Rome uses the JPK NanoWizard® AFM & CellHesion® systems to understand how cells sense and respond to mechanical stimuli April 5th, 2017

Announcements

Ultracold atom waves may shed light on rogue ocean killers: Rice quantum experiments probe underlying physics of rogue ocean waves April 27th, 2017

Looking for the quantum frontier: Beyond classical computing without fault-tolerance? April 27th, 2017

Metal nanoparticles induced visible-light photocatalysis: Mechanisms, applications, ways of promoting catalytic activity and outlook April 27th, 2017

Arrowhead Pharmaceuticals to Webcast Fiscal 2017 Second Quarter Results April 27th, 2017

NanoNews-Digest
The latest news from around the world, FREE



  Premium Products
NanoNews-Custom
Only the news you want to read!
 Learn More
NanoTech-Transfer
University Technology Transfer & Patents
 Learn More
NanoStrategies
Full-service, expert consulting
 Learn More











ASP
Nanotechnology Now Featured Books




NNN

The Hunger Project