But Is It Unique to Nanotechnology? Reframing Nanoethics

TitleBut Is It Unique to Nanotechnology? Reframing Nanoethics
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2008
AuthorsGodman, M
JournalScience and Engineering Ethics
Publication Languageeng
AbstractThis article looks at the sub-discipline of nanoethics and discusses the nature of this new discipline. The author argues that it is important to focus on the broader ethical implications of nanotechnology, rather than only on the unique ethical questions it may raise, due to its interdisciplinary nature, and the fact that nanotechnology is likely to raise many of the same ethical questions that other emerging technologies have in the past. Instead of nanoethics only focusing on ethical issues unique to nanotechnology, the author urges us to focus on the ensuing ethical issues of nanotechnology might both generate and resolve. He then divides the issues that should be focused on into procedural issues, or issues that should be included in regulation and policy making, and ensuing ethical issues, or issues that will arise after nanotechnology applications become available. Procedural issues include planning to make sure the positive and negative effects of nanotechnology are distributed equally, and ensuring transparency and public inclusion in decision-making about the research and development of nanotechnology. The author also draws a second distinction relating to the central value of ethical issues. He argues that the condition of ethical debate differs depending on whether the values in question is internal to the development of nanotechnology, or values, such as the values of health and safety which are included in the plans of development of nanotechnology(advances in medicine/health risks caused by engineered nanoparticles), or external values, such as privacy and justice that are not usually thought to have been included in the expectations of nanotechnology development.
NotesCover Date: September 2008.Source Info: 14(3), 391-403. Language: English. Journal Announcement: 42-4. Subject: APPLIED ETHICS; ETHICS; NANOETHICS; NANOTECHNOLOGY; RISK. Update Code: 20090226.
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