Author: Alistair Sponsel

Is the Nobel Prize a Dream-Machine? Governing CRISPR/Cas9

In remarks published shortly after the announcement that the 2020 Nobel Prize in chemistry would be awarded to Emmanuelle Charpentier and Jennifer Doudna for developing the CRISPR/Cas9 gene-editing technique, Global Observatory director Sheila Jasanoff offered comments on the significance of this accolade. Less well recognized is the role of the Nobel Prize as a dream-machine: …

Editorial Humility, May 6 2019

In an event that anticipated the Observatory’s founding, Eric Lander (Broad Institute), Carrie Wolinetz (NIH), and four panelists discussed the opportunities for governance provided by the current effective moratorium on heritable human genome editing. A video replay of the full “Editorial Humility” program is available here.

Science, Technology, & Human Values: Special Issue

J. Benjamin Hurlbut, Sheila Jasanoff, and Krishanu Saha, guest-edited the November 2020 issue of the journal Science, Technology, & Human Values. This collection of essays, “Constitutionalism at the nexus of life and law,” explores how revolutions in notions of biological life are eliciting correspondingly revolutionary imaginations of how life should be governed. The overarching goal …

Origins of the Global Observatory

The Observatory initiative grew out of a meeting entitled Editorial Aspirations: Human Integrity at the Frontiers of Biology held at Harvard in April, 2017. It drew together a diverse group of international leaders, including scientists who made fundamental contributions to the development of CRISPR, the former chair of the German National Ethics Council, a member …