Who’s Reading the Research?

Apparently federal agencies are “conducting a review of research they support that could be used by terrorist groups.” According to a document issued by the Department of Health and Human Services’s Office of Biotechnology Activities:

The purpose of this Policy is to establish regular review of United States Government funded or conducted research with certain high-consequence pathogens and toxins for its potential to be dual use research of concern (DURC) in order to: (a) mitigate risks where appropriate; and (b) collect information needed to inform the development of an updated policy, as needed, for the oversight of DURC. The fundamental aim of this oversight is to preserve the benefits of life sciences research while minimizing the risk of misuse of the knowledge, information, products, or technologies provided by such research.

Hmmm, “research the department supports that could be used by terrorist groups.” Isn’t that all of it? Isn’t that the way research works?

Daniel Luzer

Daniel Luzer is the news editor at Governing Magazine and former web editor of the Washington Monthly. Find him on Twitter: @Daniel_Luzer