Scientific Citizenship and good governance : implications for biotechnology
In the wake of public distrust regarding biotechnology, it has been suggested that the debate should be moved 'upstream', whereby the public help to set research priorities. Although many scientists see this as an illogical reaction to a loss of faith in science, we argue that the boundaries between science and its technological applications have become blurred and this produces conflicts of interests that have led to this crisis of trust. Furthermore, this distrust is also a crisis in governance that calls for a new open and democratic approach to scientific research. We propose that the concept of Scientific Citizenship, based on good governance, will help to restore public trust and bridge the gap between science and the society that it serves. Integral to this is the suggestion that the governance of science forms part of the training for scientists.