Friday 25 March; Leiden, Robin Pierce "Regulating the Unregulatable"



Kluyver colloquium
Location: Kluyver lab. lecture room 5A

Time: 12:45-13:45 hours

On Friday March 25, Dr. Robin Pierce (Biotechnology and Society, TU Delft) will present a Kluyver Colloquium with the title "Regulating the Unregulatable". Dr. Pierce obtained her PhD from Harvard University where her work focused on various aspects of genetic privacy. She also has a law degree from Berkeley and obtained her B.A. from Princeton University. She recently became an Assistant Professor in the Biotechnology and Society section of our Department. An abstract of her lecture is given below.
One of the most complex challenges that confronts the emergence of new technologies is the perceived and/or real need for “control” and hence, regulation. Numerous examples can be seen in the field of biotechnology. In some instances the reach for regulatory measures is motivated by identifiable risk, yet in other instances only the spectre or possibility of risk motivates the invocation of regulatory measures. However, in both instances it is not always clear that the target of regulation actually is “regulatable”. In such cases, the effects of the regulation can be highly controversial. This presentation explores the phenomenon of regulating the unregulatable by offering an analysis of how we do it and why, using several recent examples, including “dual use”. Finally, this work considers the implications of this practice for science and for society and for the interaction between the two.


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