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Nano-scientists call for greater understanding

Scientists at the University of Warwick are spearheading a campaign to improve the public's understanding and acceptance of nanotechnology with a special conference aimed at local schoolchildren and members of the public.

The move comes amid warnings that British science will suffer unless the attitudes of policy makers and media change.

Local schoolchildren and members of the public have been invited to a free day-long festival aimed at increasing understanding of nanotechnology on 5 July at the university campus.

The conference will be aimed at those who are interested in science and wish to find out more about nanochannels, nanofluidics, nanobots, nanotubes, nanodots and nanoimaging through exciting research presentations from leading industry and academic players.

Del Stark, CEO of the European Nanotechnology Trade Alliance, said: "Policy makers must recognise the benefits of nanotechnology and that unnecessary regulation could stifle growth and innovation and journalists must understand that the nanotech industry is committed to safety.

"Although nanotechnologies have been under development for many years it is only relatively recently that the issues behind the science have risen up the political and news agenda.

"The coming months will be a vital period in shaping the future development and application of nanotechnologies. We must be responsible custodians of this exciting branch of science and ensure a fair framework which enables the EU to compete effectively on the world stage."

Experts say there are a range of applications of nanotechnology to help developing countries in areas such as energy storage, production, and conversion, water treatment, medical diagnosis, food processing and pollution.

Dr Julie Macpherson, who has received several national and international awards for her work, said: "We've already had a number of schools say they will be joining us. It'll be a fun day, a chance for people to ask lots of questions and set the record straight.

"There are lots of scare stories surrounding nanotechnology at the moment, and I am hoping people will be put at ease when presented with the facts from those in the know."

The Nanotechnology day is part of a larger academic conference call Global Education: Universities in the 21st Century. This will see academics from all over the world visit the University of Warwick campus to examine future of higher education.

For further information, or for tickets to the one-day conference, go to or contact Dr Stefan Bon on 024 7657 4009.


For further information contact: Dr Stefan Bon 07736 932205

Richard Fern, Press Officer,
Communications Office, University House
University of Warwick, Coventry CV4 8UW
REF PR 48 RWF 21 June 2006 07876 217740 email: