11

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What if CRISPR became a standard breeding technique?

08-04-2020

New genetic technologies allow scientists to drastically accelerate the traditional breeding process, thereby achieving in years what previously took centuries. How will it change the way we produce food?

New genetic technologies allow scientists to drastically accelerate the traditional breeding process, thereby achieving in years what previously took centuries. How will it change the way we produce food?

How artificial intelligence works

14-03-2019

This briefing provides accessible introductions to some of the key techniques that come under the AI banner, grouped into three sections to give a sense the chronology of its development. The first describes early techniques, described as ‘symbolic AI’ while the second focusses on the ‘data driven’ approaches that currently dominate and the third looks towards possible future developments. By explaining what is ‘deep’ about deep learning and showing that AI is more maths than magic, the briefing ...

This briefing provides accessible introductions to some of the key techniques that come under the AI banner, grouped into three sections to give a sense the chronology of its development. The first describes early techniques, described as ‘symbolic AI’ while the second focusses on the ‘data driven’ approaches that currently dominate and the third looks towards possible future developments. By explaining what is ‘deep’ about deep learning and showing that AI is more maths than magic, the briefing aims to equip the reader with the understanding they need to engage in clear-headed reflection about AI’s opportunities and challenges, and meaningful debates about its development.

What if gene editing became routine practice?

16-10-2018

The CRISPR-Cas9 system currently stands out as the fastest, cheapest and most reliable system for ‘editing’ genes. It is seen as the biggest game changer in the field of gene editing due to its high degree of reliability, effectiveness and low cost. At the same time, the use of CRISPR has generated a series of socio-ethical concerns over whether and how gene editing should be used to make heritable changes to the human genome, to lead to designer babies, to generate potentially risky genome edits ...

The CRISPR-Cas9 system currently stands out as the fastest, cheapest and most reliable system for ‘editing’ genes. It is seen as the biggest game changer in the field of gene editing due to its high degree of reliability, effectiveness and low cost. At the same time, the use of CRISPR has generated a series of socio-ethical concerns over whether and how gene editing should be used to make heritable changes to the human genome, to lead to designer babies, to generate potentially risky genome edits or to disrupt entire ecosystems.

EYE event - The DNA revolution: We better talk this over

16-05-2018

Powerful new tools that have emerged in recent years have rendered DNA-editing technology more precise, more accessible and more affordable, allowing it to find new applications in fields such as medicine, agriculture, and energy. With its top-class academic institutions and strong biotechnology research, Europe is a driving force behind this 'synthetic biology revolution'. However, this innovative technology also poses serious risks arising from the unintended or intended effects of its use, and ...

Powerful new tools that have emerged in recent years have rendered DNA-editing technology more precise, more accessible and more affordable, allowing it to find new applications in fields such as medicine, agriculture, and energy. With its top-class academic institutions and strong biotechnology research, Europe is a driving force behind this 'synthetic biology revolution'. However, this innovative technology also poses serious risks arising from the unintended or intended effects of its use, and raises ethical concerns about the potential modification of the human genome. Can we minimise these risks, while enjoying the benefits of this new technology?

Ten more technologies which could change our lives

14-07-2017

In 2015, the European Parliament's Directorate-General for Parliamentary Research Services (DG EPRS) broke new ground with its publication 'Ten technologies which could change our lives – potential impacts and policy implications', with each chapter highlighting a particular technology, its promises and potential negative consequences, and the role that the European Parliament could and should play in shaping these developments. This new study continues this work, presenting ten additional technologies ...

In 2015, the European Parliament's Directorate-General for Parliamentary Research Services (DG EPRS) broke new ground with its publication 'Ten technologies which could change our lives – potential impacts and policy implications', with each chapter highlighting a particular technology, its promises and potential negative consequences, and the role that the European Parliament could and should play in shaping these developments. This new study continues this work, presenting ten additional technologies that will increasingly require the attention of policy-makers. The topics for the current study have been chosen to reflect the wide range of topics that the Parliament's Science and Technology Options Assessment (STOA) Panel has decided to focus upon for the eighth parliamentary term (2014-2019). The aim of the publication is not only to draw attention to these ten particular technologies, but also to promote further reflection about other technological developments that may still be at an early stage but that could, in a similar way, massively impact our lives in the short- or longer-term future.

Personalised medicine: The right treatment for the right person at the right time

08-10-2015

'Personalised medicine' refers to a medical approach that uses molecular insights into health and disease to guide decisions with regard to the prediction, prevention, diagnosis and treatment of illnesses. Genetic factors play a role in most human diseases, with gene variations contributing to their incidence or course. New tools harnessed by personalised medicine include '-omics' technologies, which seek to define and explain the molecular mechanisms of the human body, and biomarkers, allowing us ...

'Personalised medicine' refers to a medical approach that uses molecular insights into health and disease to guide decisions with regard to the prediction, prevention, diagnosis and treatment of illnesses. Genetic factors play a role in most human diseases, with gene variations contributing to their incidence or course. New tools harnessed by personalised medicine include '-omics' technologies, which seek to define and explain the molecular mechanisms of the human body, and biomarkers, allowing us to subdivide patients into groups according to their likely response to a specific treatment, and so decide on the best-suited medication. Integrating advances in molecular technology into clinical practice comes with challenges, namely the translational gap, data protection, regulatory clarity and cost. Moreover, it is considered essential to educate patients (to acquire health literacy) as well as healthcare professionals (both in terms of providing them with undergraduate education and with continuous opportunities to advance their skills). EU initiatives in the field of personalised medicine include the Innovative Medicines Initiative (IMI), financial support to major research projects, and participation in international consortia. The Luxembourg Council Presidency has made personalised medicine one of its health priorities.

Making Perfect Life: European Governance Challenges in 21st Century Bio-engineering (Study, Summary and Options Brief)

14-09-2012

The report describes four fields of bio-engineering: engineering of living artefacts (chapter 2), engineering of the body (chapter 3), engineering of the brain (chapter 4), and engineering of intelligent artefacts (chapter 5). Each chapter describes the state of the art of these bio-engineering fields, and whether the concepts “biology becoming technology” and “technology becoming biology” are helpful in describing and understanding, from an engineering perspective, what is going on in each R&D terrain ...

The report describes four fields of bio-engineering: engineering of living artefacts (chapter 2), engineering of the body (chapter 3), engineering of the brain (chapter 4), and engineering of intelligent artefacts (chapter 5). Each chapter describes the state of the art of these bio-engineering fields, and whether the concepts “biology becoming technology” and “technology becoming biology” are helpful in describing and understanding, from an engineering perspective, what is going on in each R&D terrain. Next, every chapter analyses to what extent the various research strands within each field of bio-engineering are stimulated by the European Commission, i.e., are part and parcel of the European Framework program. Finally, each chapter provides an overview of the social, ethical and legal questions that are raised by the various scientific and technological activities involved. The report’s final chapter discusses to what extent the trends “biology becoming technology” and vice versa capture many of the developments that are going on in the four bio-engineering fields we have mapped. The report also reflects on the social, ethical and legal issues that are raised by the two bioengineering megatrends that constitute a new technology wave.

Extern avdelning

Rinie van Est (Rathenau Instituut), Dirk Stemerding (Rathenau Instituut), Piret Kukk (Fraunhofer ISI), Bärbel Hüsing (Fraunhofer ISI), Ira van Keulen (Rathenau Instituut), Mirjam Schuijff (Rathenau Instituut), Knud Böhle (ITAS), Christopher Coenen (ITAS), Michael Decker (ITAS), Michael Rader (ITAS), Helge Torgersen (ITAS) and Markus Schmidt (Biofaction)

Intellectual Property Rights on Genetic Resources and the Fight against Poverty

19-12-2011

The developmental impact of intellectual property rights (IPRs) on genetic resources (GR) and associated traditional knowledge (TK) has been intensely discussed internationally for more than a decade. In this respect, plant GR for food and agriculture, GR for health as well as the related rights of indigenous and local communities possess particular importance for poverty reduction. The EU can play an important role in advancing regulatory action in this field that enhances the effectiveness of the ...

The developmental impact of intellectual property rights (IPRs) on genetic resources (GR) and associated traditional knowledge (TK) has been intensely discussed internationally for more than a decade. In this respect, plant GR for food and agriculture, GR for health as well as the related rights of indigenous and local communities possess particular importance for poverty reduction. The EU can play an important role in advancing regulatory action in this field that enhances the effectiveness of the fight against poverty, both domestically and at the international level. The 2010 Nagoya Protocol to the Convention on Biological Diversity that addresses “biopiracy” related to GR/TK is awaiting ratification and full and effective implementation, which will, inter alia, require capacity building especially for least developed countries. Another important contribution to combating biopiracy would be the establishment of a requirement to disclose in patent applications the source of any GR/TK used, as currently under negotiation in the World Trade Organisation and the World Intellectual Property Organisation. The rights of indigenous and local communities, especially with respect to their TK, deserve particular protection both in the EU and internationally, to be designed in consultation with these communities. IPRs on seeds and medicines should not be allowed to compromise the human rights to food and health. There is a need for advancing research and development on seeds and medicines that are targeted at low-income populations in developing countries.

Extern avdelning

Sebastian OBERTHÜR, Justyna POZAROWSKA and Florian RABITZ (Vrije Universiteit Brussel, Institute for European Studies, Belgium) ; Christiane GERSTETTER, Christine LUCHA, Katriona McGLADE and Elizabeth TEDSEN (Ecologic Institute, Germany)

Making Perfect Life: Bio-Engineering (in) the 21st Century - Phase II (Monitoring Report)

15-09-2011

The report describes four fields of bio-engineering: engineering of living artefacts (chapter 2), engineering of the body (chapter 3), engineering of the brain (chapter 4), and engineering of intelligent artefacts (chapter 5). Each chapter describes the state of the art of these bio-engineering fields, and whether the concepts “biology becoming technology” and “technology becoming biology” are helpful in describing and understanding, from an engineering perspective, what is going on in each R&D terrain ...

The report describes four fields of bio-engineering: engineering of living artefacts (chapter 2), engineering of the body (chapter 3), engineering of the brain (chapter 4), and engineering of intelligent artefacts (chapter 5). Each chapter describes the state of the art of these bio-engineering fields, and whether the concepts “biology becoming technology” and “technology becoming biology” are helpful in describing and understanding, from an engineering perspective, what is going on in each R&D terrain. Next, every chapter analyses to what extent the various research strands within each field of bio-engineering are stimulated by the European Commission, i.e., are part and parcel of the European Framework program. Finally, each chapter provides an overview of the social, ethical and legal questions that are raised by the various scientific and technological activities involved. The report’s final chapter discusses to what extent the trends “biology becoming technology” and vice versa capture many of the developments that are going on in the four bio-engineering fields we have mapped. The report also reflects on the social, ethical and legal issues that are raised by the two bioengineering megatrends that constitute a new technology wave.

Extern avdelning

Rinie van Est (Rathenau Institute, editor), Dirk Stemerding (Rathenau Institute, editor), Ira van Keulen (Rathenau Institute), Ingrid Geesink (Rathenau Institute), Mirjam Schuijff (Rathenau Institute), Helge Torgersen (ITA), Markus Schmidt (Biofaction), Karen Kastenhofer (ITA), Bärbel Hüsing (Fraunhofer ISI), Knud Böhle (ITAS), Christopher Coenen (ITAS), Michael Decker (ITAS) and Michael Rader (ITAS)

Human Enhancement

15-05-2009

The study attempts to bridge the gap between visions on human enhancement (HE) and the relevant technoscientific developments. It outlines possible strategies of how to deal with HE in a European context, identifying a reasoned pro-enhancement approach, a reasoned restrictive approach and a case-by-case approach as viable options for the EU. The authors propose setting up a European body (temporary committee or working group) for the development of a normative framework that guides the formulation ...

The study attempts to bridge the gap between visions on human enhancement (HE) and the relevant technoscientific developments. It outlines possible strategies of how to deal with HE in a European context, identifying a reasoned pro-enhancement approach, a reasoned restrictive approach and a case-by-case approach as viable options for the EU. The authors propose setting up a European body (temporary committee or working group) for the development of a normative framework that guides the formulation of EU policies on HE.

Extern avdelning

Christopher COENEN (ITAS), Mirjam SCHUIJFF (Rathenau Institute), Martijntje SMITS (Rathenau Institute), Pim KLAASSEN (University of Amsterdam), Leonhard HENNEN (ITAS), Michael RADER (ITAS) and Gregor WOLBRING (University of Calgary)

Kommande evenemang

30-11-2020
EPRS online Book Talk | How to own the room (and the zoom) [...]
Övrigt -
EPRS
30-11-2020
Hearing on Future-proofing the Tourism Sector: Challenges and Opportunities Ahead
Utfrågning -
TRAN
30-11-2020
LIBE - FEMM Joint Hearing: Combating Gender based Violence: Cyber Violence
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FEMM LIBE

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