Nanotechnology manipulates matter at the atomic level. It leads to innovative processes and products that are revolutionizing many areas of modern life. Huge amounts of public funds are being invested in the science, yet the public has little understanding of the technology or its ethical implications. Indeed, the ethical, social and political dimensions of nanotechnology are only beginning to receive the attention they require outside of science fiction contexts. Surveillance devices may become so small that they are practically invisible to the naked eye, raising concerns about privacy. Nanomedicine may lead to the development of new diagnostic and therapeutic devices, yet anxieties have been raised about the impact of nanobots circulating in our bodies. Military applications, or misuses, of nanotechnology raise other concerns. This book explores in an accessible and informative way how nanotechnology is likely to impact the lives of ordinary people in the coming years and why ethical reflection on nanotechnology is needed now. Articulate, provocative and stimulating, this timely book will make a significant contribution to one of the most important debates of our time.

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