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This book addresses the interconnections and tensions between technological development, the social benefits and risks of new technology, and the changing political economy of a global world system as they apply to the emerging field of nanotechnologies. The basic premise, developed throughout the volume, is that nanotechnologies have an undertheorized and often invisible social life that begins with their constructed origins and propels them around the globe, across multiple localities, institutions and collaborations, through diverse industries, research labs, and government agencies and into the public sphere. The volume situates nano innovation and development as a modernist science and technology project in a tense and unstable relationship with a fractured, postmodern social world. The book is unique in incorporating and integrating studies of innovation systems along with a focus on the risks and consequences of a globally significant set of emerging technologies. It does this by examining the social and political conditions of their creation, production, emergence, and reception.

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