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The rapid and never ending progress of today’s science and research comes with great responsibility. What is humanity without progress? And when is real progress achievable? Only when society and science work hand in hand. This includes not only keeping everyone up to date but also sharing the experience with other scientists and the public in order to keep improving research in general.

A lack of understanding often brings fear and may lead to neglection of new achievements. Understanding is a key element for public’s acceptance towards science, to keep and enhance the foundation of trust. That's why it's important to us to make the public understand what our project is about, how the methods work and who will benefit of it.
Among other things we produced a short clip of our Nanocillus for a better understanding of our project and to introduce our final product.

It is obvious that the community benefits of the results and progress of today’s science. Nevertheless, science depends on the public. Society defines the goals of scientific research and, therefore, makes science possible in the first place. Both sides benefit mutually: science seeks answers while society demands.

Closed doors, people working in white coats, gloves and mouthpieces. The laboratory. An odd image and even the word itself sounds outdated. One important aspect of bringing public and scientific work together is to increase the transparency of the working place.

More and more people take their chance and join lab tours and of course more and more labs offer them. Such actions help each side to gain more trust and reduce the uncertainty. Thanks to regulations and certain working conditions all people, in and outside the lab, can feel secure and are able to focus on their work.

New innovations are made each day, but without the right sales market they don’t appear profitable and may soon be forgotten. It’s essential to use the mutual influence to receive the needed balance between the needs and the accessible possibilities. So keep up innovations but base them on the actual demand of people and the market.
We have conducted surveys to gain more information and can therefore claim that our innovative new approach is beneficial to the public as the final consumer. (links)

The strange thing about communication is that even without speaking one is still communicating. What would life be without communication? To make progress, to exchange information, communication is needed. Communication is needed in every kind of way and in every part of daily life, and not just between scientist and the public.

While concentrating on a single project it is easy to end up with tunnel vision. It’s refreshing to exchange information with people who are not involved.
Communication and collaboration with other teams helped us and our developing project enormously. Thanks again :)

A single research team can seldom accomplish a new scientific approach all on its own. To evaluate the feasibility and the acceptance of our method of delivering drugs by using spores, we planned our project according to a multi-angled review based on by other scientists and the public as well.
In order to do so, we formed strong relationships with other iGEM-teams on a global scale. Giving and receiving feedback in different stages of our projects, we’ve helped each other to reach full potential in our work.
This fair but nonetheless competitive atmosphere pushed us through long lab-hours and was crucial for accomplishing our great results! Furthermore, we stood in close contact with different professionals who could give us great feedback on several aspects of our work. Their enthusiastic support for our new approach was a great motivation!

Research in the field of genetic engineering is highly dependent on the public. A new approach may be promising but still fail on the market because of a lack of public support. Transparency and participation are keystones to reduce prejudice towards new genetic approaches .

Motivated by all these points we’ve conducted a comprehensive survey that asked all participants about their opinion on our approach. We included in our survey also impartial information about spores and our method and compared the consult’s opinion before and after providing this information. The results allowed us to draw conclusions such as the positive correlation between transparency and acceptance.

Posted by: iGEM Freiburg

Nanocillus - 'cause spore is more!