The graph is from Rob Carlson – I’m reading his book “Biology is Technology” at the moment, and am finding that I’m learning a tremendous amount. I definitely recommend it as an overview of the challenges and the promise of synthetic biology.
Venter-Smith synthetic biology is a good scientific result, but more importantly it is a second “proof” that fundamental biological research can be done much better by private means than by public ones (the first one was Human Genome Project, speeded up by Venter).
The future of science depends clearly on what IP system society adopts in the short future.
According to this (funny ?) debate
there are four posible extreme systems or models:
–Anarchist model: No Intellectual Property / No public intervention in research, all research made by private agents.
–Communist 1 model: No Intellectual Property / All research made by public agents or intervention.
–Liberal model: Unlimited Intellectual Property / research made by private agents, no public intervention
–Communist 2 model: Unlimited IP / All research made by Public intervention.
Michael, you have been studying the future of science since a while. I have two questions: do you consider IP system issues in your book ? Independently, what system or model do you think is better ? Some people says that under the liberal system or model we would have soon dinosaurs pets and Neanderthal fiancées (pls note that this seems to have happened in the past, before the bioethical era: http://dienekes.blogspot.com/2010/05/tales-of-neanderthal-admixture-in.html).