1. The challenge of nanotechnologies / Geoffrey Hunt and Michael D. Mehta pt. 1. Introducing nanotechnology 2. Nanotechnology: from "wow" to "yuck" ? / Kristen Kulinowski 3. Nanotechnology: from Feynman to funding / K. Eric Drexler 4. Microsystems and nanoscience for biomedical applications: a view to the future / Linda M. Pilarksi, Michael D. Mehta, Timothy Caulfield, Karan V.I.S. Kaler, and Christopher J. Backhouse 5. Nanotechnoscience and complex systems: the case for nanology / Geoffrey Hunt pt. 2. Regional developments 6. Nanotechnologies and society in Japan / Matsuda Masami, Geoffrey Hunt, and Obayashi Masayuki 7. Nanotechnologies and society in the USA / Kirsty Mills 8. Nanotechnologies and society in Europe / Geoffrey Hunt 9. Nanotechnologies and society in Canada / Linda Goldenberg pt. 3. Benefits and risks 10. From biotechnology to nanotechnology: what can we learn from earlier technologies? / Michael D. Mehta 11. Getting nanotechnology right the first time / John Balbus, Richard Denison, Karen Florini, and Scott Walsh 12. Risk management and regulation in an emerging technology / Roland Clift 13. Nanotechnologyand nanoparticle toxicity: a case for precaution / C. Vyvyan Howard and December S.K. Ikah 14. The future of nanotechnology in food science and nutrition: can science predict its safety? / Arpad Pusztai and Susan Bardocz pt. 4. Ethics and public understanding 15. The global ethics of nanotechnology / Geoffrey Hunt 16. Going public: risk, trust and public understanding of nanotechnologies / Julie Barnett, Anna Carr, and Roland Clift 17. Dwarfing the social? nanotechnology lessons from the biotechnology front / Edna F. Einsiedel and Linda Goldenberg pt. 5. Law and regulation 18. Nanotechnologies and the law of patents: a collision course / Siva Vaidhyanathan 19. Nanotechnologies and civil liability / Alan Hannah and Geoffrey Hunt 20. Nanotechnologies and the ethical conduct of research involving human subjects / Lorraine Sheremeta 21. Nanotechnologies and corporate criminal liability / Celia Wells and Juanita Elias pt. 6. Conclusion 22. What makes nanotechnologies special? / Michael D. Mehta and Geoffrey Hunt.