ASU’s law school offering class addressing nanotechnology

January 4, 2008

By hammersmith

[Source:] – The Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law Arizona State University is offering Nanotechnology and the Law, a course geared toward graduate students in public policy, bioengineering, biomedicine, justice studies and political science, as well as law.

Nanotechnology, a growing science with huge implications for health, safety, quality of life and the environment, is the science of the small. It has the ability to manipulate and utilize materials at the nanoscale, where they can display unique and beneficial characteristics. It is a $50 billion industry, with more than 500 nanotechnology products on the market, from stain-free pants and suntan lotion to slow-churned ice cream. Scientists are working to develop building materials that are lightweight, strong and inexpensive, and produced with something called carbon nanotubes. Manufacturing these particles creates the possibility of environmental danger.

Professor Doug Sylvester, who will be offering the course next semester, has designed it to get students thinking and talking about a balance that protects health and safety while not penalizing science. Guest lecturers will include David Guston, director of ASU’s Center for Nanotechnology in Society, and Cynthia Selin, a Center researcher; Mike Kozicki, director of the ASU Center for Applied Nanoionics and a professor in the Ira A. Fulton School of Engineering; and Jason Robert, an assistant professor in the College of Life Sciences. The course will be held from 1:30-3:25 p.m. Thursdays, beginning Jan. 17th in Armstrong Hall. To register for the course, go to