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Lunch Seminar Series: Prof. Krishanu Saha
November 18, 2021 @ 12:30 pm - 1:30 pm
STS Lunch Seminar with Dr. Krishanu Saha, Associate Professor, Biomedical Engineering
Governing CRISPR and a Genome Editing Observatory
Thursday, November 18, 12:30-1:30 pm, via Zoom
Emerging biotechnologies enable new control over human life. How should society guide and govern the uses of these biotechnologies, including CRISPR genome editing, for therapeutic purposes? I will cover several potential answers to this question, including an international regulatory commission convened by scientific academies and a global observatory built upon an expanded international network of scholars. Given the complex, international landscape of genome editing and significant cross-national differences among regulatory cultures, deferring to a single commission to set the agenda for global governance raises troublesome questions of framing and representation. Rather, democratic governance on a global level demands a new mechanism for active, sustained reflection by scientists on their own practices, conducted in partnership with scholars from other disciplines, as well as public representatives from varied social, political, and religious backgrounds. To be legitimate, ideas of the right form of governance in this emerging and highly consequential area of research need to be opened up to a wider diversity of views and voices.