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The research catalogue is an archive of ESRC-funded grants and outputs. Links, files and other content will no longer be maintained or updated after April 2014.

The involvement of social scientists in nanotechnology and synthetic biology

Grant reference: RES-074-27-0008

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Seminar/workshop details

Ownership, sharing, and distributed innovation in synthetic biology
Founders of ‘BioBricks’ approaches to synthetic biology have their origins in the computer industry. They emphasise the inter-convertability of genetic information and material, enabled by DNA sequencing and synthesis technologies. Calvert argues that these influences have led to an explicit attempt to make synthetic biology more similar to software code which is modular, standardized and re-useable. The modular entities produced by synthetic biology are ideal for open source because they can be worked on simultaneously by a large community of both users and producers, and this can speed the development of the field.

Primary contributor

Speaker Jane Calvert

Bodies involved

Organising body Arizona State University


Genomics; synthetic biology; innovation

Additional details

03 November 2010
Tempe, AZ
03 November 2010