Science and Technology Innovation Program
Geoengineering invloves large-scale and deliberate techniques or interventions used in combination with civil engineering to affect the earth's climate, oceans, soils, and living systems, specifically to counteract global warming. This 2011 report from the Science and Technology Innovation Program reviews the challenges of geoengineering governance and argues for giving much greater attention to upstream governance strategies. Ten concerns about geoengineering are outlined including the potential for unintended consequences, the potential for ineffectiveness, the risk of sudden catastrophic warning and equity issues, among others.
Synthetic biology will allow scientists and engineers to create biological systems that do not occur naturally as well as to re-engineer existing biological systems to perform novel and beneficial tasks. This 2009 report presents a framework for addressing the social and ethical issues surrounding the field.
The application of nano-scale technologies is beginning to dramatically impact both how we produce and conserve energy. How far can these technologies take us on the road towards energy independence? In this seminar, a panel of industry experts explored a wide range of technologies, ranging from photovoltaics to lighting and clean coal technology.
The growing use of social media and other mass collaboration technologies is opening up new opportunities in disaster management efforts, but is also creating new challenges for policymakers looking to incorporate these tools into existing frameworks. The Commons Lab, part of the Science & Technology Innovation Program, hosted a September 2012 workshop bringing together emergency responders, crisis mappers, researchers, and software programmers to discuss issues surrounding the adoption of these new technologies. This report discusses the key findings, policy suggestions, and success stories that emerged during the workshop.
Games are a great way to explore policy options because they allow the player to see both intended and unintended consequences of decisions, said Diane Tucker who directs the Center’s Serious Games Initiative. Tucker described important updates coming this fall with the Election Edition of the serious game Budget Hero.
The International Life Sciences Institute will release a new report that for the first time gives scientists the elements of a framework for assessing the potential human health effects from exposure to engineered nanomaterials.
View Thanks to nanotechnology, tomorrow’s food will be designed by shaping molecules and atoms.