HDR Seminar: Ms Paris Jeffcoat; The University of Sydney – School of Chemistry HDR Seminar: Ms Paris Jeffcoat; The University of Sydney – School of Chemistry

HDR Seminar: Ms Paris Jeffcoat; The University of Sydney

Monday, 27 June 4:00pm – 5:00pm

This seminar will be delivered in Chemistry Lecture Theatre 2 and Online Zoom Please email chemistry.researchsupport@sydney.edu.au for zoom link and password.

Speaker: Ms Paris Jeffcoat; The University of Sydney

Supervisor: Prof. Liz New

Title: Letting the market decide: The rise – and regulatory risks  – of the global nanotechnology industry

Abstract: The late 20th century saw the rise of several key ‘emerging’ technologies which promised to revolutionise the material world. The beneficiaries of neoliberal attitudes and policies promulgated by the governments of developed economies around the world, many of these technologies continue to progress innovation across industries. Nanotechnology, now a US$42.2 billion global industry, is one such technology. With applications continuing to influence consumer product developments – ranging from homewares and electronics to personal care and foods – the regulatory permissiveness which once enabled the meteoric rise of nanotechnology now threatens to be its greatest undoing.

Significant and growing concern has been raised by the scientific community regarding the lack of investment in nanosafety research – which lags research into applications by decades and several orders of magnitude – and the suitability of current regulatory governance frameworks to manage its iterations and applications. As such concern trickles down and begins to inform consumer opinion, the free-market risks swinging sentiment swiftly and irreversibly towards an anti-nanotechnology sentiment similar to that encountered by biotechnologies in the late 1990s and early 2000s. Here, we argue that the economic rationalism feeding the rise (and potential fall) of nanotechnology has created a perfect storm that puts almost all stakeholders at risk.

In this seminar new nanosafety research is presented, which characterises and investigates the potential toxicity of titanium dioxide nanoparticles extracted from food products on the Australian market. Further, taking an Australian food sector case-study, an appropriate regulatory risk management response to such nanoparticles that maintains the common interests of all stakeholders and draws on recent international approaches, is discussed.

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Jun 27 2022


4:00 pm - 5:00 pm


Chemistry Lecture Theatre 2

Location 2


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