Transnational Models for Regulation of Nanotechnology

Journal of Law, Medicine and Ethics 34 (4):714-725 (2006)
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Abstract

There is much we do not know about nanotechnology. Despite its tremendous promise, nanotechnology today is mostly forecast and fervent hope. Predictions that spending on nanotechnology will increase from current levels of $13 billion to more than $1 trillion by 2015 are no more than that – simply predictions. Hopes that nanotechnology will be an essential part of solving the globe's energy, food, and water problems should be tempered by recalling a century of revolutionary technologies that failed to live up to their early promise such as nuclear energy, supersonic airplanes, or gene therapy. Many other questions continue to nip at nanotechnology's heels, not the least of which are debates about what is and is not technically feasible. Despite these uncertainties, we can have complete confidence in one aspect of nanotechnology's future – it will be subject to a host of regulations.

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