Modeling for nano risk assessment and management: The development of integrated governance tools and the potential role of technology assessment
Keywords:nanomaterials, risk governance, in silico methods, governance imaginary, technology assessment
In nano risk governance, we observe a trend toward coupling and integrating a variety of computational models into integrated risk
governance tools. This article discusses the development and design of such integrated tools as ‘nano risk governance imaginaries in the making.’ Using an illustrative example, the SUNDS tool, we show how the tool manifests conceptual shifts from risk to innovation governance, a technocratic evidence culture based on the quantification of risks, and an envisioned application in industrial innovation management. This conceptualization runs the risk of narrowing the view of nano risks and cementing the widely lamented democratic deficit in risk governance. We therefore conclude that the development and application of integrated governance tools are highly relevant for technology assessment (TA) and TA should actively engage in their development processes.
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