The Great Debate: Playing it Safe Science and the Risk Society

Panel Discussion: Wednesday 17th March 2004, 7-9pm FREE International Centre for Life, Newcastle upon Tyne

Chair David O’Toole


Professor Roy Boyne, author Risk (Concepts in the Social Sciences), Subject, Society and Culture John Gillott, co-author Science and the Retreat from Reason Professor Lynn Frewer, Chair of Food Safety and Consumer Behaviour at the Marketing and Consumer Behaviour Group, Wageningen University Phil Macnaghten, co-author Contested Natures (Theory, Culture & Society)

It is hard to believe that only a short time ago the benefits of scientific progress were taken for granted. Yet today, from nanotechnology to genetic engineering, from the Internet to the mobile phone, the tendency is to consider the risks whenever a new technology is developed. The precautionary principle urges us to err on the side of caution when knowledge is uncertain, to consider the environment and to place a duty of care on those who propose change. What are the consequences of this new way of looking at the world? Is it possible to benefit from science without taking risks? What are the dangers of playing it safe?

This session will examine risk, science and society and their relationship to ideas such as the precautionary principle.

Call to book your place on 0191 243 8292 or email the event name, your name, address, telephone number and the number of seats you require to [email protected]