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Posted: August 1, 2007

Nanoethics: The ethical and social implications of nanotechnology

(Nanowerk News) The Nanoethics Group today announced that it has released a collection of papers that is the first to address both urgent and distant issues related to nanotechnology’s impact on society. Published by John Wiley & Sons, a leading publisher in science and nanotechnology, the 416-page anthology is poised to become an indispensable resource in educating and starting a dialogue among students, policymakers, industry stakeholders, as well as the general public on nanoethics.
With papers from nearly 40 respected experts worldwide, the anthology – entitled Nanoethics: The Ethical and Social Implications of Nanotechnology – is the first to tackle a full range of issues facing nanotechnology, such as related to: benefits, risk, environment, health, human enhancement, privacy, military, democracy, education, humanitarianism, molecular manufacturing, space exploration, artificial intelligence, life extension, and more. The anthology also reprints seminal articles, such as Bill Joy’s “Why The Future Doesn’t Need Us” that already had sparked much debate.
“There hasn’t been an authoritative, single source for a broad, introductory discussion about nanoethics—until now,” explained Patrick Lin, Ph.D., director for The Nanoethics Group and visiting assistant professor at California Polytechnic State University (Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo). “We are pleased that Wiley, on the forefront of publishing, also recognized that this volume fills an important missing market in science, ethics, and society. It seems that every emerging technology raises new issues or at least adds a new dimension to ongoing debates, and nanotechnology is no exception.”
The co-editors of the volume are: Fritz Allhoff (Western Michigan Univ.), Patrick Lin (Dartmouth; Cal Poly, SLO), James Moor (Dartmouth), and John Weckert (Charles Sturt Univ.; Western Michigan Univ.) Celebrating its 200th anniversary this year, John Wiley & Sons is not only a top publisher in science and technology, but it is also known for its early work with literary giants such as Charles Dickens, Edgar Allan Poe, Victor Hugo, Hans Christian Andersen, Herman Melville, and other notables.
The anthology boasts an industry “A-List” of contributors worldwide, such as (in order of appearance): Mihail Roco (US NSF), Ray Kurzweil (Kurzweil Technologies), Christine Peterson (Foresight Nanotech Instit.), Richard A.L. Jones (Univ. of Sheffield, UK), Nick Bostrom (Oxford, UK), Jean-Pierre Dupuy (Stanford), David Guston (Arizona State Univ.), James Hughes (Trinity College), Jeroen van den Hoven (Delft Univ. of Tech., Netherlands), Joachim Schummer (Tech. Univ. of Darmstadt, Germany), and many others.
The paperback version of the anthology is uniquely and affordably priced at US$39.95 to encourage university and broader adoption as a way to further public discourse in nanoethics.
The Nanoethics Group
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