Risk management for synthetic nanoparticles

The safety and risks of nanotechnologies are not fully understood. It is not sufficient to assess the risks of nanomaterials to the environment and health. They must also be communicated to the public in a way that it can understand.

The NanoSafety project dealt with the potential environmental, health, and safety risks of nanomaterials. The health and environmental effects of nanomaterials are still uncertain, NanoSafety attempted to fill the gaps in our knowledge.

It is difficult for decision makers to regulate nanomaterials, because there are still insufficient data and sound research results to support concrete legislation, e.g. laying down threshold values or even bans.

Focus on risk management and communication

To illuminate this problem, the project focused on two major aspects of regulation: 1) Different risk management strategies for nanomaterials in the EU and 2) problems in the communication of the risks.

The results of the project were discussed with Members of the European Parliament (MEPs) in a number of workshops. A focus group was also asked about its concerns and expectations. The results are of assistance in the development of a future communication strategy.



  • Fleischer, T., Haslinger, J., Jahnel, J., & Seitz, S. B. (2012). Focus Group Discussions Inform Concern Assessment and Support Scientific Policy Advice for the Risk Governance of Nanomaterials. International Journal Of Emerging Technologies And Society, 10, 79-95. Retrieved from http://www.swinburne.edu.au/hosting/ijets/journal/V10/pdf/Article%205_Fleischer%20et%20al.pdf
  • Fleischer, T., Jahnel, J., Schimmelpfeng, J., Seitz, S., Fiedeler, U., & Haslinger, J. (2011). NanoSafety – Risk Governance of Manufactured Nanoparticles – Report on Results of Focus Groups incl. Draft Conclusions Paper – Deliverables No. 3 & 4. Wien.
  • Haslinger, J. (2011). BürgerInnen im Dialog über Nanopartikel. Ita-Newsletter, 14. Retrieved from http://epub.oeaw.ac.at/ita/ita-newsletter/NL0611.pdf#14
  • Fleischer, T., Jahnel, J., Seitz, S., Fiedeler, U., & Simkó, M. (2010). NanoSafety – Risk Governance of Manufactured Nanoparticles – Phase II, Deliverable No. 2 (p. 85). Retrieved from http://www.europarl.europa.eu/meetdocs/2009_2014/documents/stoa/dv/3_nanosafety_int_report_/3_nanosafety_int_report_en.pdf
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Conference Papers/Speeches

Conference Papers/Speeches


01/2010 - 10/2011