Claudia Neubauer

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Bio

Dr. Claudia Neubauer is co-founder and director of Fondation Sciences Citoyennes, a non profit organisation located in Paris that aims at democratising sciences and technologies so that they serve common goods and a socially and ecologically more just world. She holds a PhD in human genetics and a Masters in scientific journalism. She has been working on issues such as scientific citizenship, national and European research systems, expertise and research capacities of civil society organisations, and nanotechnology.


Long bio:

"Dr. Claudia Neubauer holds a PhD in human genetics, and a Masters degree in scientific journalism.

In 2002, she co-founded with friends and colleagues the French NGO think tank Fondation Sciences Citoyennes (Foundation Citizens Sciences), a non profit organisation that aims at democratising sciences and technologies so that they serve common goods and a socially and ecologically more just world. In 2003, Claudia Neubauer became director of the association. Sciences Citoyennes works into three main issues : - increasing the research and innovation capacities of civil society organisations (participatory (action) research, scientific third sector or third sector of knowledge production) ; - opening the scientific community to scientific controversies with a strong societal dimension (GMOs and emerging technologies in general, energy, transport, agriculture, environment, climate change, social cohesion, etc.), protection of whistle blowers ; - democratic elaboration of techno-scientific choices (participatory methodologies, technical democracy). The association works towards scientists and scientific institutions, NGOs and policy makers. It joins the larger transition movement.

Dr. Neubauer has been working on issues such as preimplantation genetic diagnosis, nanotechnology, national and European research systems, scientific citizenship, and expertise and research capacities of civil society organisations. She is (co)-author of reports for the French Ministry of Research, the Office for Technology Assessment at the German Parliament, and the European Commission. Since 2009, she is board member of the European Network of scientists for social and environmental responsibility (ENSSER, created the same year), and since 2010 member of the Unit 'Foresight' of the Social, Economic and Environmental Council of the French region Bretagne."


Discussion

"Scientific and technical developments profoundly affect our societies at the social, political, ethical, economic, environmental and cultural level. As a powerful collective endeavour of constructing knowledge, the scientific activity plays a key role in the exploration of possible futures, and in the mastering of a collective future in democratic societies. In key documents of European and national research policies, the concept of the commons (such as for instance present in participatory research approaches) are notably absent.

By contrast, the "key enabling technologies", as well as research with private industry do not lack attention due to the potential attributed to them to give rise to patentable and marketable products. However, the recognition of a less institutional and alternative research is part of a living vision of what democracy is.

It is an asset for research and innovation by opening options, and an enrichment not only of social and democratic life, but also of science itself, which remains one of the fundamental tools for the transformation of society. Today there are researchers who reflect on the commons. There are researchers who are developing research protocols for a science of the commons both in its production methods as by the results it produces. But above all, the overwhelming majority of scientists never cared about the commons and the reality that its actors wish to build. How to change this situation?"