Knowledge base

Society and synthetic cells: A position paper by the Future Panel on Synthetic Life

The paper summarises more than two years of conversation about the key challenges, dilemmas, and possible societal impacts of synthetic cell research and offers some recommendations for fostering socially responsible synthetic cell development. Suggested recommendations include organizing civil society participation in synthetic cell research and fostering a socially responsive academic ecosystem.

The Futur Panel was set up by Radboud University and the Rathenau Instituut (the Netherlands) as part of BaSyC (Building a Synthetic Cell), a Dutch research program that aims to build a synthetic cell from scratch. The objective of the Future Panel was to create a first agenda for a future political, academic, and public debate on the synthetic cell.