250,145 research outputs found

    Explorative Nanophilosophy as Tecnoscienza: An Italian Perspective on the Role of Speculation in Nanoindustry

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    There are two primary camps in which nanotechnology today can be categorized normal nanotechnology and speculative nanotechnology. The birth of nanotechnology proper was conceived through discourses of speculative nanotechnology. However, current nanotech-nology research has detracted from its speculative promises in favour of more attainable material products. Nonetheless, normal nanotechnology has leveraged the popular support and consequential funding it needs to conduct research and development (R&D) as a result of popular conceptions of speculative nanotechnology and its promises. Similarly, the scholarly literature has shifted its focus away from speculative nanofutures towards normal nanotech-nology R&D. This paper shows that there is an incongruence between the representation of nanotechnology in the media, scholarly journals and industry

    Nanomaterials in food and agriculture: The big issue of small matter for organic food and farming

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    Nanotechnology is the study of very small matter, of materials where one dimension is less than 100 nanometres. Surveys reveal that consumers are generally ignorant of nanotechnology, are concerned of its risks versus benefits, expect labelling of products incorporating nanotechnology, and a big issue for respondents is particularly the use of nanotechnology in food. Organic standards of Australia, Canada, Demeter-International and the UK’s Soil Association exclude nanomaterials, however a general nanotechnology exclusion across the organics sector is lacking

    Nanotechnology, No Free Lunch

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    Nanotechnology is the new science and technology of the super small. Particles at the nano-scale, from one to one hundred billionths of a metre, exhibit novel properties. Nanotechnology is an active area of research and rapid commercialization. The food industry has been targeted as a potential recipient of this new technology and engineered nanoparticles are reportedly already in some super-market products. Nanotechnology is currently unregulated, and there are no requirements for mandatory labelling, this leaves consumers unprotected and uninformed. Consumers are largely unaware of nanotechnology, expect labelling on nano-products, are unclear of the cost/benefit balance, and express an unwillingness to purchase nanofood. The asymmetric information status of nanotechnology, together with its undetermined safety, raises issues, opportunities, and risks for food manufacturers and retailers. Some local organic food standards, including AUstralia and UK, have nanotechnology exclusions in place

    A Map of the Nanoworld: Sizing up the Science, Politics, and Business of the Infinitesimal

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    Mapping out the eight main nodes of nanotechnology discourse that have emerged in the past decade, we explore how various scientific, social, and ethical islands of discussion have developed, been recognized, and are being continually renegotiated. We do so by (1) identifying the ways in which scientists, policy makers, entrepreneurs, educators, and environmental groups have drawn boundaries on issues relating to nanotechnology; (2) describing concisely the perspectives from which these boundaries are drawn; and (3) exploring how boundaries on nanotechnology are marked and negotiated by various nodes of nanotechnology discourse.Comment: 25 page

    The challenges of "upstream" communication and public engagement for Irish nanotechnology

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    This paper sets out some challenges for Ireland’s contribution to nanotechnology public engagement in the context of current STS and science communication theoretical practice approaches. I report on a pilot set of public engagement activities and accompanying‘multi-sited ethnographic’ and frame analysis methodologies. I reflect on how the theoretical context of these methods and findings present a challenge for nanoscience communicators in the first instance, but also for the social scientists and academics that are themselves contributing to the discourse of nanotechnology and, intentionally or not, communicating nanotechnology to diverse publics. I identify six discourse sites of nanotechnology which have the potential for public engagement

    Nanotechnology and business opportunities: scenarios as awareness instrument

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    For a few years now, nanotechnology has been recognised as a promising new growth innovator. This leads to a shift from the exploration of nanotechnology knowledge towards a phase of exploitation. The coming years this commercialisation of nanotechnology will be extended. Nanotechnology is a disruptive technology phenomenon, which leads to more difficulties in overseeing business opportunities. Additionally, the fact that high-tech small firms, especially those dealing with nanotechnology, are highly interested in developments in science and technology, begs the question how to stimulate the awareness for (new) business opportunities in nanotechnology within these firms. A promising strategy to stimulate learning and awareness of business opportunities in nanotechnology is the use of scenarios. These projections focused on uncertainty stretch the mental model of entrepreneurs and/or managers and have the ability to activate learning processes. This paper presents the (theoretical) fundaments of scenario usage in relation to the recognition of business opportunities in nanotechnology.

    Nanotechnology and cancer

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    The biological picture of cancer is rapidly advancing from models built from phenomenological descriptions to network models derived from systems biology, which can capture the evolving pathophysiology of the disease at the molecular level. The translation of this (still academic) picture into a clinically relevant framework can be enabling for the war on cancer, but it is a scientific and technological challenge. In this review, we discuss emerging in vitro diagnostic technologies and therapeutic approaches that are being developed to handle this challenge. Our discussion of in vitro diagnostics is guided by the theme of making large numbers of measurements accurately, sensitively, and at very low cost. We discuss diagnostic approaches based on microfluidics and nanotechnology. We then review the current state of the art of nanoparticle-based therapeutics that have reached the clinic. The goal of the presentation is to identify nanotherapeutic strategies that are designed to increase efficacy while simultaneously minimizing the toxic side effects commonly associated with cancer chemotherapies