Current Codes of Practice / Conduct for working with nanotechnologies
Codes of Practice (CoP) and Codes of Conduct (CoC) provide stakeholders with guidelines that support a responsible and open approach to research in their given field. These codes are typically supplementary to existing regulations, and should be used to compliment such legal frameworks.
Two CoP/CoCs published to date have been identified as key to nanosciences and nanotechnologies, specifically the European Commission Code of Conduct
and the Responsible NanoCode
. These codes aim to establish a consensus of what constitutes good practice, and provide guidance on what organisations can do to demonstrate responsible governance of this evolving area of technology. In addition, they encourage stakeholders to consider all aspects of their involvement with nanotechnologies, including the broader social and ethical issues. As such, their implementation should assist in responsible development of nanosciences and nanotechnologies in order to meet their potential to deliver health, environmental, social and economic benefits. These codes are outlined below, together with a brief summary of their content: