Abstract Global climate change will have a strong impact on Nigeria, particularly on agricultural production and associated livelihoods. Although there is a growing scientific consensus about the impact of climate change, efforts so far in Nigeria to deal with these impacts are still rudimentary and not properly coordinated. There is little evidence of any pragmatic approach towards tracking climate change in order to develop an evidence base on which to formulate national adaptation strategies. Although Nigeria is not alone in this (...) regard, the paper asserts that National Climate Change Adaptation Strategy could help address this situation by guiding the integration of climate change adaptation into government policies, strategies, and programs, with particular focus on the most vulnerable groups and the agricultural sectors. There is an urgent need to adopt abatement strategies that will provide economic incentives to reduce the risk from disasters, such as developing agricultural practices that are more resilient to a changing climate. Content Type Journal Article Category Articles Pages 1-11 DOI 10.1007/s10806-011-9336-0 Authors N. A. Onyekuru, Ecosystems and Society Research Cluster, Department of Environment, University of York, York, UK Rob Marchant, Ecosystems and Society Research Cluster, Department of Environment, University of York, York, UK Journal Journal of Agricultural and Environmental Ethics Online ISSN 1573-322X Print ISSN 1187-7863. (shrink)
Risk management of nanotechnology is challenged by the enormous uncertainties about the risks, benefits, properties, and future direction of nanotechnology applications. Because of these uncertainties, traditional risk management principles such as acceptable risk, cost–benefit analysis, and feasibility are unworkable, as is the newest risk management principle, the precautionary principle. Yet, simply waiting for these uncertainties to be resolved before undertaking risk management efforts would not be prudent, in part because of the growing public concerns about nanotechnology driven by risk perception (...) heuristics such as affect and availability. A more reflexive, incremental, and cooperative risk management approach is required, which not only will help manage emerging risks from nanotechnology applications, but will also create a new risk management model for managing future emerging technologies. (shrink)
The nanomedicine field is fast evolving toward complex, “active,” and interactive formulations. Like many emerging technologies, nanomedicine raises questions of how human subjects research (HSR) should be conducted and the adequacy of current oversight, as well as how to integrate concerns over occupational, bystander, and environmental exposures. The history of oversight for HSR investigating emerging technologies is a patchwork quilt without systematic justification of when ordinary oversight for HSR is enough versus when added oversight is warranted. Nanomedicine HSR provides an (...) occasion to think systematically about appropriate oversight, especially early in the evolution of a technology, when hazard and risk information may remain incomplete. This paper presents the consensus recommendations of a multidisciplinary, NIH-funded project group, to ensure a science-based and ethically informed approach to HSR issues in nanomedicine, and to integrate HSR analysis with analysis of occupational, bystander, and environmental concerns. We recommend creating two bodies, an interagency Human Subjects Research in Nanomedicine (HSR/N) Working Group and a Secretary's Advisory Committee on Nanomedicine (SAC/N). HSR/N and SAC/N should perform 3 primary functions: (1) analysis of the attributes and subsets of nanomedicine interventions that raise HSR challenges and current gaps in oversight; (2) providing advice to relevant agencies and institutional bodies on the HSR issues, as well as federal and federal-institutional coordination; and (3) gathering and analyzing information on HSR issues as they emerge in nanomedicine. HSR/N and SAC/N will create a home for HSR analysis and coordination in DHHS (the key agency for relevant HSR oversight), optimize federal and institutional approaches, and allow HSR review to evolve with greater knowledge about nanomedicine interventions and greater clarity about attributes of concern. (shrink)
Scientific research is subject to a number of regulations which impose incidental (time, place), rather than substantive (type of research), restrictions on scientific research and the knowledge created through such research. In recent years, however, the premise that scientific research and knowledge should be free from substantive regulation has increasingly been called into question. Some have suggested that the law should be used as a tool to substantively restrict research which is dual-use in nature or which raises moral objections. There (...) are, however, some problems with using law to restrict or prohibit certain types of scientific research, including (i) the inherent imprecision of law for regulating complex and rapidly evolving scientific research; (ii) the difficulties of enforcing legal restrictions on an activity that is international in scope; (iii) the limited predictability of the consequences of restricting specific branches of scientific research; (iv) inertia in the legislative process; and (v) the susceptibility of legislators and regulators to inappropriate factors and influence. Rather than using law to restrict scientific research, it may be more appropriate and effective to use a combination of non-traditional legal tools including norms, codes of conduct, restrictions on publication, and scientist-developed voluntary standards to regulate problematic scientific research. (shrink)
This paper compares the incidence of the diagnosis of Autistic Spectrum Disorders (ASD) among White and Asian children with reference to data obtained from thirteen local education authorities (LEAs) in England. It begins by outlining some of the theoretical debates associated with the definition, diagnosis and prevalence of ASD. The empirical component underpinning this work uses logistic modelling to ascertain whether the proportion of children with a statement of special educational need (SEN) for ASD is different for Asian and for (...) White children and whether the proportion of children with a statement of SEN for ASD varies between LEAs. The discussion speculates as to possible reasons for the differences found and identifies areas for further research. (shrink)
Clinical trials of nanotechnology medical products present complex risk management challenges that involve many uncertainties and important risk-risk trade-offs. This paper inquires whether the precautionary principle can help to inform risk management approaches to nanomedicine clinical trials. It concludes that prudent precaution may be appropriate for ensuring the safety of such trials, but that the precautionary principle itself, especially in its more extreme forms, does not provide useful guidance for specific safety measures.
Research progress assessing the role of attentional focusing instructions on skill acquisition and performance has lead researchers to apply this approach to force production tasks. Initial converging evidence indicates that force production tasks are sensitive to verbal instruction; externally focused instructions (onto movement outcomes, or onto the object force is being exerted against) are shown to be more beneficial than internally focused instructions (focusing attention onto the movements being executed). These benefits are observed for maximal and accurate force production, as (...) well as the maintenance of force production in prolonged tasks. A range of mechanisms are identified supporting the proposal that an external focus promotes movement efficiency in line with energy and effort conservation. Future research is required to assess how this developing body of work interacts with the broader understanding of psychological and physiological factors implicated in the effective production, maintenance and limitation of maximal or sub-maximal forces. (shrink)