Maastricht University, Netherlands
Darian Meacham is Assistant Professor of Philosophy at Maastricht University (Netherlands). He currently Principal Investigator for Ethics and Responsible Innovation at the Brightlands Institute for Smart Digital Society (BISS), an interfaculty institute at Maastricht University and editor-in-chief of the Journal of the British Society for Phenomenology.From 2015-19 he was Director for Responsible Research and Innovation at BrisSynBio, (a BBSRC / EPSRC funded Synthetic Biology Research Centre based at University of Bristol, United Kingdom.) With a background in phenomenology, bioethics and political philosophy his research focuses on how technological developments impact and transform our experience and understanding of central political concepts like sovereignty, solidarity, citizenship, community. The question that drives this research is: how is technological innovation transforming the contemporary vocabulary of political thought?
Keynote Presentation: Synthetic Affinities - Reflections on Philosophy and Responsible Innovation in the context of a UK Synthetic Biology Research Centre
Abstract: In this talk I will reflect upon the experience of being an “embedded philosopher” at BrisSynBio (a UK Research Council funded Synthetic Biology Research Centre). Specifically, I will try to sketch some of the the multi-faceted relations and affinities between philosophy, politics, and synthetic biology that emerged and coalesced during the course of the centre’s life and in the role of philosophy and responsible innovation as cross-cutting themes within the centre’s work. In this context, I will discuss the status of synthetic biology as an instance of "techno-science" and the advent of “responsible research and innovation” practices and regimes as mechanisms for modulating relations between techno-science and “society”.