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Nanotechnology, society and environment

Murphy, Padraig and Munshi, Debashish and Lakhtakia , Akhlesh and Kurian, Priya A. and Bartlett, Robert V. (2011) Nanotechnology, society and environment. In: Andrews, D. and Scholes , G. and Wiederrecht , G., (eds.) Comprehensive nanoscience and technology. Elsevier, pp. 443-476. ISBN 978-0-12-374396-1

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Nanotechnology talk is moving out of its comfort zone of scientific discourse. As new products go to market and national and international organizations roll out public engagement programs on nanotechnology to discuss environmental and health issues, various sectors of the public are beginning to discuss what all the fuss is about. Non-Governmental Organizations have long since reacted; however, now the social sciences have begun to study the cultural phenomenon of nanotechnology, thus extending discourses and opening out nanotechnology to whole new social dimensions. We report here on these social dimensions and their new constructed imaginings, each of which is evident in the ways in which discourses around nanotechnology intersects with the economy, ecology, health, governance, and imagined futures. We conclude that there needs to be more than just an ‘environmental, legal and social implications’, or ‘ELSI’, sideshow within nanotechnology. The collective public imaginings of nanotechnology include tangles of science and science fiction, local enterprise and global transformation, all looking forward towards a sustainable future, while looking back on past debates about science and nature. Nanotechnology is already very much embedded in the social fabric of our life and times.

Item Type:Book Section
Uncontrolled Keywords:Equity; environment; health; imaginaries; nanotechnology and society; nanotechnology discourses; nanotechnology ethics; risk; science communication; science governance; science and nature
Subjects:Social Sciences > Sociology
Social Sciences > Communication
Social Sciences > Political science
DCU Faculties and Centres:DCU Faculties and Schools > Faculty of Humanities and Social Science > School of Communications
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Copyright Information:© 2011 Elsevier
Use License:This item is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-Share Alike 3.0 License. View License
ID Code:14813
Deposited On:18 Dec 2014 11:18 by Padraig Murphy. Last Modified 18 Dec 2014 11:18

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