8 Colum. Sci. & Tech. L. Rev. 1 (2006-2007)

handle is hein.journals/cstlr8 and id is 1 raw text is: The Columbia
SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY LAW REVIEW
www.stlr.org
A SMALL MATTER OF REGULATION:
AN INTERNATIONAL REVIEW OF NANOTECHNOLOGY REGULATION
Diana M. Bowman & Graeme A. Hodge*
Rapid technological advances and commercialisation within the
emerging field of nanotechnology will challenge traditional regulatory
regimes. Yet while the promising nanotechnology phenomenon has
attracted extensive scientific and commercial interest, there has been only
limited debate on the associated regulatory and legal aspects. This paper
examines the current domestic and international regulatory frameworks
into which nanotechnology is now being thrust. Using the context of the
world's leading public sector investors, the United States and Japan, as
well as Australia and the United Kingdom, the effectiveness of these
regulatory frameworks is investigated. The paper argues that current
national frameworks relevant for nanotechnology contain visible gaps.
Furthermore, these regulatory fissures are magnified at the international
level. As an example, the paper examines the role of the World Trade
Organisation's Trade-Related Intellectual Property Rights Agreement and
its applicability as one important regulatory mechanism in the
commercialisation of nanotechnology. This paper concludes that if we
can now learn from past regulatory successes and failures, nanotechnology
offers a unique opportunity to re-evaluate the efficacy of current
regulatory regimes, thereby circumventing some of the primary regulatory
difficulties experienced with earlier technological advances.
The authors would like to express their appreciation to Dr. Karinne Ludlow, Faculty of Law,
Monash University, and Dr. Peter Binks, CEO of Nanotechnology Victoria, for their insightful
comments.

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