The Dutch Gravitation programme's latest tranche of funding awards has shifted its focus to the downsides of future technologies. Merel Postma asks Sabine Roeser, professor of ethics at the Delft University of Technology, to explain the thinking behind the change.
Every year the Dutch Gravitation programme awards millions of euros to top scientists researching emerging technologies. This year a total of €114 million was won by six projects, which are expected to carry out groundbreaking multidisciplinary research over the next decade.
But while the focus in the previous rounds of the programme was on more and better technology—such as using intelligent biomaterials and achieving advances in quantum computers—the latest awards are primarily concerned with the responsible application of technologies.