World Economic Forum takes on nanotechnology

World Economic Forum takes on nanotechnology

Nanowerk brings news that the World Economic Forum is both rewarding nanotechnology pioneers and taking a look at potential risks of nanoparticles. Excerpts:

Over the past few years, the Global Risk Network team has released an annual report. This years’ report “Global Risks 2008” (pdf download, 1.6 MB) was published two weeks ago. In it, as in previous years, nanotechnology was characterized as a global core risk…

Although nanotechnology has been included in the “Core Risks” group, it ranks well below the majority of risks both on the ‘severity’ and ‘likelihood’ scales…

Underlining the positive impacts of nanotechnologies, the World Economic Forum’s Technology Pioneer program accepted four nanotechnology companies (out of 39) as 2008 Pioneers: Cima NanoTech Inc., Nanostellar Inc., RainDance Technologies, Unidym Inc.

Regarding the risks, we’re guessing that they’re only looking at nanomaterial EHS concerns, and not security issues arising from the nanotech-based military innovations coming later. —Christine

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  1. Michael Gusek January 29, 2008 at 7:29 am - Reply

    Good point, Christine.

    I would not be surprised if the WEF knows of these security issues but are trying to socialize nanotech as safe for the uninitiated masses. A little strategic politics never hurt anyone?

  2. Daria Dorosh February 18, 2008 at 7:46 am - Reply

    Where is the conversation about the impact of nano materials in terms of breakdown, disposability, and infiltration into our worldscape?
    How vulnerable will all living organisms be to invasion by discarded nano particles? Are we setting up the next “Scale Wars”? Along with the promising applications, responsibility for clean up and safety should be addressed.

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