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Engaging Narratives and the Limits of Lay Ethics: Introduction


By csep - Posted on 03 November 2010

TitleEngaging Narratives and the Limits of Lay Ethics: Introduction
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2010
AuthorsNordmann, Alfred, and Macnaghten Phil
JournalNanoEthics
Volume4
Issue2
Pagination133 - 140
Date Published08/2010
PublisherSpringer Netherlands
Publication Languageeng
ISSN Number1871-4757
Abstract

How can one discover the ethical issues associated with nanotechnologies? One heuristic is to tend closely to the ethical reflections of lay publics and the ways in which these are informed by experience with technological innovation, technology governance, and the (broken) promises of visionary science and technology. A close collaboration between social scientists and philosophers took this heuristic to its limits: On the one hand, it achieved remarkably fine–grained insights into public reflection about nanotechnologies. On the other hand, a philosophical analysis of these reflections makes apparent that there is a profound disconnect between the lay ethics rooted in public talk and the ethical and normative commitments that are embedded in nanotechnological research programs and practices. This paper describes the aims of the DEEPEN project - namely to explore the motivations behind engaging stakeholders and lay publics and how these conversations helped to express the lay publics understanding of nanoethics, as well as what is actually meant by the "responsible development of nanotechnology."

URL10.1007/s11569-010-0095-6