First large-scale participatory event on nanotechnology

UT Austin’s STS Program is sponsoring a Civic Forum on the Societal Implications of Nanotechnology: “This participatory civic event, the first large-scale nanotechnology event of its kind in the world, is designed to set standards for effective stakeholder engagement of nanotechnology’s societal opportunities and challenges.” The program includes 90 minutes of “Civic Participation in Nano Scenario – All Participants.” It is designed to attract the public, including a comedian as emcee, free lunch, and a raffle: “great prizes include a Samsung 50′ DLP TV among many others.” If there’s a free lunch, there must be a catch, and here it is: “you must commit to the full day (9-3:30).” Advance registration required.

I have to admit to being skeptical about this kind of event, but will look forward to hearing from those of you who attend. The results would seem to depend so heavily on exactly who is doing the organizing and what they choose to present, and how. If it is a great event, how could that level of judgment be duplicated in other locations, with other organizers? It’s so subjective…If you attend, please let us know how it goes. –CP

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