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Regulating Nanoscience: A Proposal and a Response to J. Clarence Davies
Volume 3, Issue 4

David M. Berube, University of South Carolina

Regulating nanotechnology has been discussed in many articles in this journal and elsewhere. One of the most compelling works on the subject was completed by J. Clarence Davies, who called for a comprehensive examination and enhancement of current regulatory regimes which may be relevant to nanotechnology. In this article, Professor Berube situates regulation in terms of public perception of risk and government responses to such. Next, he criticizes many of Davies’ recommendations on how the government should respond to new nanoproducts, and finally, he offers an alternative call for a liability and insurance regime running concurrently with both the Environmental Protection Agency’s voluntary pilot program and other efforts. While the insurance industry will be tested by these recommendations, the tasks before them could be lessened with supportive legislative efforts by Congress. While hardly an ideal solution to the problems at hand, it deserves to be debated and discussed within the context of other regulatory responses.

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