1. ESRC Genomics Network (archive)
  2. Gengage
  3. The Human Genre Project

Genomics Forum · News

Exploring facts and fiction around genetics

16.04.2012

Introduction

The conference is entitled ‘Genomics in Society: Facts, Fictions and Cultures.’ A key theme is the relationship between the promises and fictions of genomics and the social realities emerging during its development, and artistic representations will also be explored.

Story

Ten years of research into the societal impact of genetics and genomics will be showcased and celebrated at a major international conference in London next week.

This year’s Genomics Network (EGN) annual conference is something of a landmark, as it marks 10 years since the inception of the Network. The programme, packed with more than 70 speakers from different countries and continents, concentrates on human identity and health issues and the effects of new genetic testing technologies.

“The Network’s last conference, organised jointly with the OECD, focused primarily on innovation and the bio-economy,” explained conference organiser Dr Christine Hauskeller, Senior Research Fellow at Egenis, the Network research centre based at the University of Exeter. “The breadth of the work of the EGN enables us this year to focus on genomics in society, on human genetics and new testing technologies, exploring the societal changes these may bring and the ethical issues raised.”

The conference takes place at the British Library on 23-24 April. “The British Library is the perfect venue for a conference that will, among other themes, explore literary and media representations, which shape the image and imaginaries enveloping genetics,” said Dr Hauskeller.

The keynote speakers are Celeste Condit, Anne-Fausto-Sterling, Ann Lingard and Margaret Lock, and each EGN centre will present its own particular strength in research. Participants can expect to gain an excellent overview of the latest developments and social science insights regarding human genomics in society in the UK, in Europe and across the globe.

“I’m thrilled to have the chance to hear researchers from different national contexts making sense of the complex uptake of genetics research into human lives,” said Professor Condit (University of Georgia, USA). “If we have any hope of guiding these technologies within our social values, these kinds of discussions – informed by knowledge of both the science and the social contexts for its application – are crucial.”

The EGN conferences are an outstanding opportunity for social science and humanities scholars. This year’s programme, which celebrates a decade of world-class research and the international recognition it has attracted, should be exceptionally informative.

Notes for Editors:

  1. Egenis is the Centre for Genomics in Society, a research centre at the University of Exeter studying the meaning and social implications of developments in genomic science. www.genomicsnetwork.ac.uk/egenis/
  2. For further details or to arrange an interview, contact Claire Packman, Egenis Communications Officer, on 01392 725126, c.h.packman@exeter.ac.uk

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