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This workshop posed the question, “How can engineering ethics contribute to the positive potential of the new field of synthetic biology?” It brought together synthetic biology researchers and experts in engineering ethics and science and technology studies (STS), to examine how research and educational activities can help to achieve those positive goals.
Read about the workshop objectives and notes and other details from the meeting at the Online Ethics Center.
William Wulf, former president of the National Academy of Engineering, recently said that “The complexity of newly engineered systems coupled with their potential impact on lives, the environment, etc., raise a set of ethical issues that engineers have not been thinking about.” This statement is notably relevant to the new field of synthetic biology, where biologists and engineers do research and develop applications.
The workshop was organized by the Synthetic Biology Project of the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars and the Center for Engineering, Ethics and Society of the National Academy of Engineering and held on September 29-30, 2010.