Words of Caution on Making Objects of Security Concern

As we continually develop new areas of technology, how do we think about how that technology might cause harm? In this talk, I draw out some lessons that can be learned from how Americans have built scientific cultures and governance mechanisms for constructing and governing security concerns in the life sciences. These cultures and mechanisms are…

Biosecurity Governance for the Real World

Current efforts to limit the dissemination of dual-use biological research results are rooted in simplistic understandings of how such knowledge becomes dangerous. I argue in an article appearing in the Fall 2016 Issues in Science and Technology that it’s time for a new approach. Read the full preprint. With little fanfare, the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine…

Book chapter on ‘Taking Care’ in synthetic biology

Synthetic biology, from its early stages of development, has had an explicit focus on biosafety and biosecurity concerns. These concerns are being identified and addressed in different ways, including strategies that ‘take care of’ them by getting them off the mind, and approaches that attend to and ‘care for’ concerns in more open-ended ways. In…

Book Review: Vulnerability in Technological Cultures

This edited volume explores the concept of vulnerability as a useful analytic lens for studying big issues in technological cultures, providing a more compassionate and encompassing framing of issues than traditional risk analyses. “Book Review: Vulnerability in Technological Cultures: New Directions in Research and Governance. Edited by Anique Hommels, Jessica Mesman and Wiebe E. Bijker.” Science…

Science and Democracy Network

The Science and Democracy Network (SDN) was established in 2002 to enhance the quality and significance of scholarship in science and technology studies (STS) by training young professionals and by forging links between STS and related fields of study and practice. The SDN sponsors an annual meeting whose primary goal is to strengthen and deepen…

Society for the Social Studies of Science

The Society for the Social Studies of Science (4S) is the leading academic society for Science and Technology Studies (STS). As an active member, I attend their annual meeting, where I often host sessions about building a community within STS around science, technology, and security issues research. This is a primary venue for sharing my…