24 Nov 202216:00 - 19:30Maxwell Centre, Cavendish Laboratory, JJ Thomson Avenue Cambridge CB3 0HE



  • Karishma Jain (Deputy Director, NanoDTC)

The present and impending environmental crises and resulting social crises require approaches that can grapple with the very complex nature of the problems we face. More specifically, they require researchers in scientific, technological and socially oriented disciplines to come together to explore and understand these complexities, and reflect on how socially oriented, non-technical approaches can work together with technical approaches to address the challenges we face. As a step towards creating spaces for these cross-disciplinary conversations, CRASSH and the NanoDTC are organising a joint event, with an intentionally provocative statement ‘Technology can Save the World’ as the primary subject of discussion.

The event will start with short contributions from PhD students from technologically as well as socially oriented disciplines, before the floor is opened up more broadly. A panel of more senior academics will be invited to comment on some of the points raised in the debate, and there will be time for reflection on opportunities to carry on cross-disciplinary conversations, and initiatives for joint work on the subject that can be referred to as ‘sustainability’.

At present we are looking for expressions of interest from PhD students for making opening statements of up to 3 minutes at this event. Please see the ‘call for papers‘.

All forms of opening statements are welcome, including those talking about technologies that hold immense promise, the unintended impacts of the materials required to create technology, what ‘saving the world’ might mean in different contexts, the simultaneous emancipatory and controlling potential of technology, and so on.

Participation is encouraged from all disciplines across the University of Cambridge and beyond.

Supported by:

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Nano Logo





If you have specific accessibility needs for this event please get in touch. We will do our best to accommodate any requests.

Call for papers

Technology can save the world – an interdisciplinary debate?

Call for contributors for a debate organised jointly by the Centre for Research in Arts, Social Sciences and Humanities (CRASSH) and the UKRI Centre for Doctoral Training in Nanoscience and Nanotechnology (NanoDTC).

We are looking for expressions of interest from research students (PhD or Masters) for making opening statements of up to 3 minutes at this event. Participation is encouraged from all disciplines across the University.

Please complete this form by Friday 28 October to express interest in making an opening statement.



Welcome and Introduction

Karishma Jain (Deputy Director, NanoDTC)


Brief (3-minute) opening statements by research students from different disciplines, followed by a round of questions and discussion




Comments by senior academics working on different aspects of technology, society and sustainability, followed by another round of questions and discussion


Closing remarks

Joanna Page (Director, CRASSH)
Stephan Hofmann (Director, NanoDTC)


Drinks and nibbles

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