Science and Technology Innovation Program
What are the possible risks and benefits of nanotechnology and consumer products? In an effort to reach out to the American public and engage them in an important online conversation about the issue, the Project on Emerging Nanotechnologies is collaborating with Consumers Union – publishers of Consumer Reports magazine and Consumer Reports Online.
Jean Lipman-Blumen, Thornton F. Bradshaw Professor of Public Policy at the Peter F. Drucker Graduate School of Management, Claremont Graduate University, and author of The Connective Edge: Leading in an Interdependent World and Hot Groups: Seeding Them, Feeding Them, and Using Them to Ignite Your Organization, co-written with Harold J. Leavitt. In this interview, Dr. Lipman-Blumen talks about connective leadership, hot groups, and the relationship between innovation and failure in organizations.
RFID technology could improve traffic flow, encourage recycling, and inform consumers if implemented responsibly.
This white paper describes a groundbreaking system of citizen science projects by the U.S. Geological Survey and other scientific institutions to detect and monitor earthquakes and engage the public in scientific research about seismic events. These approaches seek to provide a more robust earthquake alert network and generate more real-time motion data. The paper also looks at how future efforts could be improved. Successful crowdsourcing projects at the federal level must navigate a web of practical, legal and policy considerations. This paper identifies some of these hurdles and provides lessons learned so that others may apply them to their unique missions.
In New Life, Old Bottles: Regulating First-Generation Products of Synthetic Biology, Michael Rodemeyer examines the benefits and drawbacks of using the existing U.S. regulatory framework for biotechnology to cover the new products and processes enabled by synthetic biology. The safety of early applications of synthetic biology may be adequately addressed by the existing regulatory framework for biotechnology, especially in contained laboratories and manufacturing facilities, according to the report. But further advances in this emerging field are likely to create significant challenges for U.S. government oversight.
Leaders in disaster response are finding it necessary to adapt to a new reality. Although community actions have always been the core of the recovery process, collective action from the grassroots has changed response operations in ways that few would have predicted. Using new tools that interconnect over expanding mobile networks, citizens can exchange information via maps and social media, then mobilize thousands of people to collect, analyze, and act on that information. Sometimes, community-sourced intelligence may be fresher and more accurate than the information given to the responders who provide aid. This report explores approaches to the questions that commonly emerge when building an interface between the grassroots and government agencies, with a particular focus on the accompanying legal, policy, and technology challenges.