Governing nanotechnologies through societal engagement
Nanotechnologies – the purposeful engineering of matter on the atomic or molecular scale – have given rise to great expectations in recent years, unlocking new research opportunities in areas as diverse as energy, healthcare, electronics, food, and construction. At the same time, concerns have been raised about possible unintended consequences of the use of nanomaterials.
The EU-funded GoNano project enabled co-creation between citizens, civil society organisations, industry, researchers and policy makers across Europe to align future nanotechnologies with societal needs and concerns. GoNano demonstrated how researchers can work with publics and professional stakeholders to create novel suggestions for future nanotechnology products through three co-creation pilots within the areas of food, health and energy. This co-creation process illustrated new opportunities for innovation and policy recommendations.
Aligning nanotechnologies with societal needs and values
• Showcasing early citizen and stakeholder engagement across Europe.
• Developing nine product suggestions for future nanotechnologies in the area of health, energy, and food.
Policy recommendations in support of a responsive research and innovation system and co-production of knowledge
• Consolidating a network of European Technology Platforms (ETP), research and innovation communities, and policy makers.
• Providing recommendations for strengthening responsiveness to societal needs, values and concerns.
Increased confidence of stakeholders that new technologies respond to societal needs and values
• Building a community of citizens, civil society representatives, researchers, innovators and policy makers working to enhance the responsiveness of nanotechnoloy research and innovation.
• Demonstrating the added value of co-creation to align innovation with societal values.