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The Ethics of ProtocellsMoral and Social Implications of Creating Life in the Laboratory$
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Mark A. Bedau and Emily C. Parke

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780262012621

Published to MIT Press Scholarship Online: August 2013

DOI: 10.7551/mitpress/9780262012621.001.0001

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The Ambivalence of Protocells: Challenges for Self-Reflexive Ethics

The Ambivalence of Protocells: Challenges for Self-Reflexive Ethics

(p.199) 12 The Ambivalence of Protocells: Challenges for Self-Reflexive Ethics
The Ethics of Protocells

Brigitte Hantsche-Tangen

The MIT Press

This chapter deals with the public’s role in decision making about new technologies is a contentious issue. It highlights the difficulty of giving due weight to societal values when making decisions about the future with protocells. It argues that protocells have the potential to be a mighty tool sharing high ambivalence as a feature with other advanced technologies. This chapter shows that ethical considerations are important for protocell research and development due to social and economic interactions of the new technology with humankind, and the idea deeply embedded in society that the whole endeavor need not be condemned if ethics are interlaced with the process of scientific research.

Keywords:   protocells, humankind, scientific research, technology, decision making, ambivalence, ethical considerations

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