Australian biocivic concerns and governance of forensic DNA technologies: confronting technocracy
The creation of forensic DNA databases and the uses of DNA profiling for criminal investigation are significant fields for life sciences governance. Despite the pressing need for civic input on the human rights and privacy issues associated with rapid expansion of forensic databases, there have been limited opportunities for citizens to debate these issues. Against the global expansion of these technologies, this paper investigates the case of Australia through attention to media coverage and policy analysis. Three key narratives about forensic DNA appear to dominate news media over the past decade: the narratives of DNA database implementation, biocivility, and persuasion, with the latter directed at consolidating support for a particular point of view. With investigation indicating that a technocratic approach to DNA forensics characterizes Australian policy, overseas developments, especially UK civic trajectories, are considered and the case made for overarching institutional participatory approaches in this field.
New Genetics and Society
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