Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

A small piece out in The Conversation, Canada edition

In Uncategorized on August 12, 2017 at 2:05 pm

Why “ability expectations” must be central to debates on science and our future The Conversation, Canada

News item: Human embryo editing breakthrough is a ‘major advance’ towards controversial treatments for babies

In Uncategorized on August 2, 2017 at 5:57 pm

Well we will see whether its a major advance but the wide scope beyond ‘disease’ is evident in this part “Though the scientists only edited out mutations that could cause diseases, it modified the nuclear DNA that sits right at the heart of the cell that also influences personal characteristics such as intelligence, height, facial appearance and eye colour.”

Consequences fit with the Ability studies scope of the WolbPack and our work on genetics and other linked areas. Cheers Gregor

link to the article

Human enhancement as a tool for adaptation to social and environmental problems?

In Uncategorized on July 24, 2017 at 1:41 am

Interesting how this pro enhancement podcasts is introduced. The climate change angle was before put forward Liao, S. M., Sandberg, A., & Roache, R. (2012). Human engineering and climate change. Ethics, Policy & Environment, 15(2), 206–221.

Looked into this line of argument in our EcoHealth piece Wolbring, G., Ecohealth through an ability studies and disability studies lens. In Ecological Health: Society, Ecology and Health, Gislason, M. K., Ed. Emerald: London, UK, 2013; Vol. 15, pp 91-107.

Of course huge impacts on disabled people but of course the whole discussion on hunan enhancements impacts disabled people Wolbring, G.; Diep, L.(2016) The Discussions around Precision Genetic Engineering: Role of and Impact on Disabled People Laws5(3), 37; doi: 10.3390/laws5030037

link to the webpage and podcast

from the link

“What if humans are genetically unfit to overcome challenges like climate change and the growing inequality that looks set to define our future?

Julian Savulescu, visiting professor at Monash University and Uehiro professor of Practical Ethics at Oxford University, argues that modifying the biological traits of humans should be part of the solution to secure a safe and desirable future.”


Cheers Gregor




Work by myself and my students now available on this blog

In Uncategorized on July 21, 2017 at 10:25 pm

Hi everybody, I decided to put my work and the work of my students the WolbPack also on this blog as I can alert people on updates here and also post other thoughts related to our work.  Please look under Academic Life: Gregor Wolbring and Academic Life of my students: The WolbPack  for all the info about my work and the work of my students.

Cheers Gregor

Greening and Energy Issues: An Analysis of Four Canadian Newspapers

In Uncategorized on June 25, 2013 at 3:46 pm

Wolbring Gregor and Noga Jacqueline (2013) Greening and Energy Issues: An Analysis of Four Canadian Newspapers Journal of Sustainable Development Vol. 6, No. 7; Article 8; DOI: 10.5539/jsd.v6n7p88


Energy equity and environmental security.

In Uncategorized on December 31, 2012 at 9:03 pm

Moss, Jeremy; McMann, Michael; Rae, Jessica; Zipprich, Andrea; Macer, Darryl R.J.; Nyambati, Aori R.; Ngo, Diana; MingMing Cheng; Manohar, N.; Wolbring, Gregor. 2011. Energy equity and environmental security. Bangkok, Regional Unit for Social and Human Sciences in Asia and the Pacific (RUSHSAP), UNESCO Bangkok. v + 84 pp. ISBN 978-92-9223-421-8 (Although the book states 2011 as publishing date it only became officially available Dcember 2012 before that drafts were available online though) http://www.unescobkk.org/rushsap/ethics-and-climate-change/energyethics/eetwg7/

Nanotechnology for Democracy versus Democratization of Nanotech

In Uncategorized on December 31, 2012 at 8:55 pm

Wolbring, Gregor, (2012) : Nanotechnology  for Democracy versus Democratization of Nanotech: An Ableism Analysis, pp. 89-105 in Little by Little: Expansions of Nanoscience and Emerging Technologies, Eds Harro van Lente, Christopher Coenen, Torsten Fleischer, Kornelia Konrad, Lotte Krabbenborg, Colin Milburn, and François Thoreau, Dordrecht: AKA-Verlag/IOS Press  full book http://www.iospress.nl/book/little-by-little-expansions-of-nanoscience-and-emerging-technologies/

CALL FOR PAPERS for the International Journal of Disability, Community & Rehabilitation (IJDCR): What Sorts of People Should There Be?

In Uncategorized on May 1, 2012 at 12:07 am


                                      for the International Journal of Disability, Community & Rehabilitation (IJDCR)

What Sorts of People Should There Be?

 Guest Editor

Gregor Wolbring, Community Rehabilitation and Disability Studies, Dept. of Community Health Sciences, University of Calgary 




Throughout history, people with non-normative abilities have been judged. Sometimes this judgment led to positive consequences, however for the most part these non-normative abilities were judged negatively and the carriers of such non-normative abilities experienced disabling treatment.   This very judgment (ableism) and its disabling consequences is one of the main areas of scholarly work within the realm of disability studies. Eugenics, the practice of finding ways to better heritable abilities of humans, is one dynamic that influences the judgment of people’s abilities and the disabling consequences and vice versa.


What sorts of people should there be is a question that has been asked and answered in different ways throughout human history, is still a question asked and answered today and will be with us also for some time in the future. 


Advances in science and technology will allow new judgments and actions linked to the sentiment around the question of what sorts of people there should be. 


In partnership with the SSHRC-CURA-funded project “Living Archives on Eugenics in Western Canada” (eugenicsarchive.ca), the Editors of IJDCR would like to devote a special issue on this topic. 

We invite potential contributors, regardless of fields of study (discipline), to submit 250-word abstracts that articulate the conceptual arguments and knowledge base to be covered in a critical analysis on various aspects from history to future of “What sorts of people should there be”.


Please submit abstracts to the Guest Editor via e-mail at gwolbrin[at]ucalgary.ca  by 15 July, 2012


From selected abstracts, we will request full articles of 3000-5000 words (excluding figures and tables) of original research and scholarship on a range of topics to be submitted to the editor by 15 October 2012. Note that an invitation to submit an article does not guarantee its publication.


Every submitted article will be subject to blind peer review and recommendations arising.


As to possible areas linked to the theme the below is a sample list of possible topics


  • What sorts of people should be born
  • What sorts of people should live
  • What sorts of people should be citizens
  • What sorts of people should compete
  • What sorts of people….


We invite authors to investigate the history, contemporary use and potential future exhibition of the relationships between the core question “What sorts of people should there be” and such issues as:


  • disabled people and what it means to be ‘disabled’,
  • the community around them
  • practitioners, consumers and researchers linked to the disability discourse
  • community rehabilitation and the rehabilitation field in general
  • inclusive education and the education of disabled people in general
  • the future of education
  • employability of disabled people
  • citizenship of disabled people
  • global citizenship
  • body image of disabled people
  • medical and social health policies and their impact on disabled people
  •  health care for disabled people
  • elderly people, youthism and ageism
  • disabled people in low income countries
  • laws and international conventions related to disabled people such as the UN      Convention on the rights of persons with disabilities
  • the concept of personhood
  • concept of health and health care
  • the measure of disability adjusted life years and other measurements used to guide health care dollar allocation
  • quality of life assessment
  • history
  • future
  • science and technology governance
  • science and technology assessment
  • ethics
  • enhancement

 For more information about the International Journal of Disability, Community & Rehabilitation (IJDCR) please go to http://www.ijdcr.ca.


International Journal of Disability, Community & Rehabilitation


ISSN 1703-3381





Dr Gregor Wolbring

Associate Professor, University of Calgary,

Faculty of Medicine,

Dept. of Community Health Sciences, Specialization Community Rehabilitation and Disability Studies, 

3330 Hospital Drive NW, T2N4N1, Calgary, Alberta , Canada

Email: gwolbrin[at]ucalgary.ca

Phone 1-403-210-7083

Web: http://www.crds.org/research/faculty/Gregor_Wolbring.shtml



NBICS and generation of synthetic organisms/genomes/life?

In Uncategorized on May 24, 2010 at 11:04 pm

Researchers at the J. Craig Venter Institute (JCVI), a not-for-profit genomic research organization, published results on the 20 May describing the successful construction of the first self-replicating, synthetic bacterial cell.

here my column on it

Human enhancement Study

In Uncategorized on July 11, 2009 at 2:40 pm

just out
Human Enhancement Study for Directorate General for internal policies, Policy Dept. A: Economic and Scientific Policy Science and Technology Options Assessments


PhD position in Bioethics Within the project ENABLE – Protecting Vulnerable Persons in Health Care

In Uncategorized on June 18, 2009 at 4:18 pm

Institute for Biomedical Ethics, Geneva University Medical School

PhD position in Bioethics

Within the
project ENABLE – Protecting
Vulnerable Persons in Health Care (supervisor: Samia Hurst), the Institute for Biomedical Ethics at the
University of Geneva Medical School is opening one
PhD position for a philosophy doctoral candidate. This project is
funded by
the Swiss National Science Foundation.
collaboration with the project
supervisor and within an interdisciplinary team, the successful
work will explore how vulnerability in health care can be defined
as well as sources of claims for protection of the vulnerable, how
they are, and what effect their validity may have on fairness in
allocation decisions. Projected duration for this position is four
Salary is according to the University of Geneva scale (A2
assistant, 70%, approx. 46’000 CHF per annum the first year). Within
this time
frame, the successful candidate will be expected to complete a PhD
thesis in
philosophy under the (co-)supervision of Bernard Baertschi,
on a
topic broadly within the area of normative ethics and/or applied
The ideal
candidate should have a
Master’s degree in philosophy or equivalent, including courses in
normative ethics, applied ethics, and/or political philosophy, and at
intermediate mastery of written English.

Please send
your CV, a writing
sample, and letter of motivation to: Samia.hurst@unige.ch
Before: August
15th 2009
Any relevant
publications (max. two)
should be attached to the application and will be considered an asset.
will be held in

— Dr Samia Hurst Institut d’éthique biomédicale CMU/1 rue Michel Servet 1211 Genève 4 – Switzerland Tel: +4122-3793479 Fax: +4122-3793472 Blog: http://forumethix-ch.blogspot.com/ Homepage: http://ib.unige.ch/SH_homepage.php SGBE-SSEB: http://www.bioethics.ch/content/default.htm

OECD launches database on research into the safety of manufactured nanomaterials

In Uncategorized on April 8, 2009 at 11:30 pm

here the link

Emotiv Systems uses your thoughts to power gaming

In Uncategorized on April 5, 2009 at 3:01 am

Ars checks in from GDC09, where Emotiv Systems is showing off its new headset
that control games with both your thoughts and your facial expressions. The
surprising thing? It works. Our hands-on time with the $300 product that
knows what you’re thinking.

more here

Stem cell ‘deafness cure’ closer

In Uncategorized on April 5, 2009 at 2:58 am

Stem cells that could be used to restore hearing have been
successfully created, scientists have said.

A Sheffield University team took stem cells from embryos and converted
them into cells that behave like sensory hair cells in the human inner

Their discovery could ultimately help those who have lost hair cells
through noise damage and some people born with inherited hearing
see here

Another issue for debate

Insurers scrutinize nanotechnology

In Uncategorized on March 30, 2009 at 7:48 pm

Rhitu Chatterjee
Environ. Sci. Technol., Article ASAP
DOI: 10.1021/es900041e
Publication Date (Web): January 21, 2009
Copyright © 2009 American Chemical Society

On September 24, 2008, the U.S. insurance company Continental Western Group (CWG) issued a statement noting that it would exclude nanotubes and nanotechnology from its coverage. http://pubs.acs.org/doi/full/10.1021/es900041e?cookieSet=1

Brazil: Collective Agreement in Chemicals Requires Nanotech, Environmental Training

In Uncategorized on March 30, 2009 at 7:45 pm

more here

Mapping Study On Regulation and Governance Of Nanotechnologies

In Uncategorized on March 30, 2009 at 7:43 pm

more here

Industry, NGOs at odds over nanotech regulation

In Uncategorized on March 30, 2009 at 7:36 pm

March 4th more here

EFSA publishes opinion on the potential risks arising from nanotechnologies on food and feed safety

In Uncategorized on March 30, 2009 at 7:33 pm

March 5 more here

Japanese Ministry Issues Guidelines to Reduce Risk from Nanotechnology

In Uncategorized on March 30, 2009 at 7:30 pm

more here