Nano Archive

Sunscreens with Titanium Dioxide (TiO2) Nano-Particles: A Societal Experiment

Jacobs, Johannes F. and Poel, Ibo and Osseweijer, Patricia (2010) Sunscreens with Titanium Dioxide (TiO2) Nano-Particles: A Societal Experiment. NanoEthics, 4 (2). pp. 103-113.

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The risks of novel technologies, such as nano(bio)technology cannot be fully assessed due to the existing uncertainties surrounding their introduction into society. Consequently, the introduction of innovative technologies can be conceptualised as a societal experiment, which is a helpful approach to evaluate moral acceptability. This approach is illustrated with the marketing of sunscreens containing nano-sized titanium dioxide (TiO2) particles. We argue that the marketing of this TiO2 nanomaterial in UV protective cosmetics is ethically undesirable, since it violates four reasonable moral conditions for societal experimentation (absence of alternatives, controllability, limited informed consent, and continuing evaluation). To remedy the current way nano-sized TiO2 containing sunscreens are utilised, we suggest five complementing actions (closing the gap, setup monitoring tools, continuing review, designing for safety, and regulative improvements) so that its marketing can become more acceptable.

Item Type:Article
Uncontrolled Keywords:Ethics . Environmental health and safety (EHS) . Nanomaterial . Nanotechnology . Risk assessment and management . Societal experimentation . Sunscreen . Titanium dioxide (TiO2) . Uncertainty . UV protection
Subjects:Social and Political Science > Societal and ethical aspects of nanotechnology
ID Code:9600
Deposited By:Lesley Tobin
Deposited On:10 Sep 2010 12:37
Last Modified:10 Sep 2010 12:37

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