Science and Technology Studies in Policy: The UK Synthetic Biology Roadmap

Science, Technology, and Human Values 45 (1):34-61 (2020)
  Copy   BIBTEX

Abstract

In this paper, we reflect on our experience as science and technology studies researchers who were members of the working group that produced A Synthetic Biology Roadmap for the UK in 2012. We explore how this initiative sought to govern an uncertain future and describe how it was successfully used to mobilize public funds for synthetic biology from the UK government. We discuss our attempts to incorporate the insights and sensibilities of STS into the policy process and why we chose to use the concept of responsible research and innovation to do so. We analyze how the roadmapping process, and the final report, narrowed and transformed our contributions to the roadmap. We show how difficult it is for STS researchers to influence policy when our ideas challenge deeply entrenched pervasive assumptions, framings, and narratives about how technological innovation necessarily leads to economic progress, about public reticence as a roadblock to that progress, and about the supposed separation between science and society. We end by reflecting on the constraints under which we were operating from the outset and on the challenges for STS in policy.

Links

PhilArchive



    Upload a copy of this work     Papers currently archived: 91,088

External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server

Through your library

Similar books and articles

Synthetic biology, metaphors and responsibility.Carmen McLeod & Brigitte Nerlich - 2017 - Life Sciences, Society and Policy 13 (1):1-13.
Discipline-building in synthetic biology.Bernadette Bensaude-Vincent - 2013 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part C: Studies in History and Philosophy of Biological and Biomedical Sciences 44 (2):122-129.
Basic science through engineering?: Synthetic modeling and the idea of biology-inspired engineering.Tarja Knuuttila & Andrea Loettgers - 2013 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part C: Studies in History and Philosophy of Biological and Biomedical Sciences 44 (2):158-169.

Analytics

Added to PP
2020-11-24

Downloads
15 (#834,700)

6 months
5 (#311,051)

Historical graph of downloads
How can I increase my downloads?