Public Participation in Nanotechnology Workshop Report

Subject Area:
NNI Workshop Reports
Author: NNI/ NSET
Publication Date: Apr. 19 2012

Description:

This document is the report of the NNI Workshop on Public Participation in Nanotechnology held in May
2006. The workshop was sponsored by the NSET Subcommittee and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
as part of long-range planning efforts for the NNI, guided by thoughtful concern for the opinions and benefit
of the American people. The recommendations of the public participation workshop provided guidance to
the NSET Subcommittee and its Nanotechnology Public Engagement and Communications (NPEC) Working
Group in the development of NNI strategic plans, and they continue to serve as a reference point for ongoing
public participation activities related to the NNI. Some information in the body of the report was updated
through 2008; the preface includes some additional updates through early 2012; however, the main content
dates from 2006.

Any opinions, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this report are those of the authors
and workshop participants and do not necessarily reflect the views of the United States Government or the
authors’ parent institutions. This report is not a consensus document but rather is intended to reflect the
diverse views, expertise, and deliberations of the workshop participants.

The report was designed, assembled, and edited by NNCO staff.


Nanotechnology Fact

Nanotechnology encompasses science, engineering, and technology at the nanoscale, which is about 1 to 100 nanometers. Just how small is that? A nanometer is one-billionth of a meter. For reference, a sheet of paper is about 100,000 nanometers thick. Nanoscale matter can behave differently than the same bulk material. For example, a material’s melting point, color, strength, chemical reactivity, and more may change at the nanoscale.

Researchers seeking to understand the fundamentals of properties at the nanoscale may call their work nanoscience; those focused on effective use of the properties may call their work nanoengineering. Encompassing nanoscale science, engineering, and technology, nanotechnology involves imaging, measuring, modeling, and manipulating matter at the nanoscale.

Learn more in the Nano 101 section.

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