Revision as of 16:06, 26 October 2010 by MJvdN (Talk | contribs)

Human Practices

We of the iGEM Groningen 2010 team thought it to be very important to not only direct our attention to the scientific part of our project, but we also focused on increasing general knowledge about synthetic biology and science overall amongst the general public since it can sometimes appear an increasingly large fissure is forming between scientists and the man in the street. Especially in these times when biotechnology is advancing so greatly, new discoveries can come off as wacky inventions from for example Star Trek.

We reached out to the public by visiting high schools to present our project and synthetic biology in general. Moreover we offered high schools the opportunity to send their students over to our lab for a master class in which we tried to get teenagers interested in the life sciences and to show them all life on earth is build up from basic parts which are shared by humans and organisms as different to us as tomatoes. And in addition to this we were involved in a monthly returning event in which scientist reach out to the public in an informal setting. We also conducted a survey amongst the participants in these events.

Of course we think ethics are very important within our project to since we are dealing with genetically engineered organisms which we – in theory – would apply outside the lab, so we need to consider this. However, since a lot was already written on ethics by last years’ iGEM Groningen team we decided to focus on education.