The Impact of Dual Use Controls on UK Science: Results from a Pilot Study
AbstractConcerns about the proliferation of biological weapons and the threat posed by bioterrorism have assumed greater political prominence in recent years. In response, governments are actively attempting to frustrate the diffusion of technologies, relevant to the production of biological weapons, to regimes and non-state actors which might develop and use such weapons. Their most recent efforts have involved the introduction of a range of new national measures to control access to materials, knowledge and technologies. Preventing the diffusion of the necessary knowledge and technologies used to develop biological weapons is complicated because the underlying technologies often have legitimate and socially beneficial applications. Any controls to prevent their hostile application can also potentially disrupt legitimate activity, thereby generating social costs. For example, anecdotal evidence suggests that the introduction of biosecurity controls in the US and Germany are adversely affecting scientific research in those countries. Governments therefore need to balance these costs against the security benefits that such controls generate. To do this policy makers need information on the impact of these new ‘biosecurity’ measures. However, this is a new area of policy and few impact assessments have been performed. This pilot project, funded by the Economic and Social Research Council3, developed and validated new methods for assessing the impact that UK government biosecurity policies, introduced to prevent legitimate scientific research from being misused, are having on the practice of science. This short report briefly explains the project and outlines a sample of the initial results.
Download InfoIf you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by SPRU - Science and Technology Policy Research, University of Sussex in its series SPRU Working Paper Series with number 132.
Length: 14 pages
Date of creation: 20 Apr 2005
Date of revision:
Contact details of provider:
Postal: Jubilee Building G08, Falmer, Brighton, BN1 9SL
Phone: +44 (0)1273 686758
Fax: +44 (0)1273 685865
Web page: http://www.sussex.ac.uk/spru
More information through EDIRC
biological weapons; bioterrorism; knowledge; control of proliferation; biosecurity;
Find related papers by JEL classification:
- O33 - Economic Development, Technological Change, and Growth - - Technological Change; Research and Development; Intellectual Property Rights - - - Technological Change: Choices and Consequences; Diffusion Processes
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ALL-2005-05-07 (All new papers)
- NEP-INO-2005-05-07 (Innovation)
- NEP-TID-2005-05-07 (Technology & Industrial Dynamics)
You can help add them by filling out this form.
reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.Access and download statisticsgeneral information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Russell Eke).
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.