Project on Emerging Nanotechnologies

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In April 2005 the Pew Charitable Trusts and the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars announced that they had formed the Project on Emerging Nanotechnologies "to help businesses, governments, and the public anticipate and manage possible health and environmental implications" of nanotechnology. [1]

Background on the Project

In an accompanying backgrounder the Pew Charitable Trusts are more explicit that the role of the project is to facilitate the development of nanotechnologies. "The Project is dedicated to helping ensure that as nanotechnologies advance, risks are minimized, public and consumer confidence remain strong, and these new technologies can flourish," they state. [2]

Despite their determination to promote nantech they also note that some early studies have indicated potential health problems with nantechnology particles. "Many unknowns remain, especially regarding the long-term impacts of exposure and the possible effects of nano-engineered materials on the environment and ecosystems. At the moment, exposure to these materials is quite limited, but as production ramps up worldwide, these uncertainties need to be resolved and the capacity of oversight mechanisms evaluated," they state.


In March 2005 the board of the Pew Charitable Trusts approved a grant for Project on Emerging Nanotechnologies of $3,000,000.00 over 2 years. Pew describe the project as being "to ensure that the federal government and private sector address the potential human health and environmental risks as well as the benefits of emerging nanotechnologies." [3]

In October 2005 DuPont and Environmental Defense (ED) announced a "partnership" to "define a systematic and disciplined process that can be used to identify, manage and reduce potential health, safety and environmental risks of nano-scale materials across all lifecycle stages. This framework will then be pilot-tested on specific nano-scale materials or applications of commercial interest to DuPont." [4]

In its media release, ED's Fred Krupp, stated that its "work to develop this partnership was supported in part by the Project on Emerging Nanotechnologies, a partnership of The Pew Charitable Trusts and the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars." [5]


Project leader

Advisory Board


Other SourceWatch resources

Contact details

Project on Emerging Nanotechnologies
Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars
Ronald Reagan Building and International Trade Center
One Woodrow Wilson Plaza
1300 Pennsylvania Ave., NW, Washington, DC 20004-3027
Phone: (202) 691-4282
Fax: (202) 691-4001

External links