Nanotechnology Project


International Council on Nanotechnology Launches Global Research Needs Assessment

Thursday May 1, 2008 - 2 to 3 PM

View Webcast

6th Floor Boardroom - Directions

Broad stakeholder groups work to predict and manage the impacts of nanomaterials

As nanotechnology has moved out of the laboratory and into commercial products, many have begun to question the impact of nanoscale materials on health and the environment. Learning more about such impacts, however, presents a daunting task, given the number of potential products, the pace of innovation, and the need to share information and leverage costs toward a more efficient, timely international research effort. A major challenge has been to produce a global research strategy for predicting the interactions between engineered nanoparticles and biological systems so that biocompatible nanomaterials can be developed and applied safely.

Last year, more than 70 experts from 13 countries - in academia, industry, governments and non-governmental agencies - accepted that challenge. In an unprecedented international collaboration, the International Council on Nanotechnology (ICON) convened two workshops aimed at defining a set of research needs for assessing potential nanotechnology impacts.

The results of this multi-stakeholder effort, funded by ICON and the National Science Foundation, will be unveiled on Thursday, May 1, when ICON, in partnership with the Project on Emerging Nanotechnologies, releases the “International Assessment of Nanotechnology Environment, Health and Safety Research Needs” - a report on the findings of the two workshops.