Mar./2013
(STRATEGIC PROPOSALS)
Preparedness Framework and Its Governance of Dual Use Research of Concern for Promising Progress of Life Sciences/CRDS-FY2012-SP-02
Executive Summary

The risk of potential dual use of life science researches has recently increased, especially due to the progression of molecular biology.
This proposal targets life science researches and suggests develop strategies to prevent dual use and establish the governance system for the development of life science to contribute, in a sustainable way, to promote global health and protect global environment as well as those of Japan.
This proposal is intended for the offices and ministries of governmental agency, funding agencies, academic societies, research institutions, and research personnel, laboratories. This proposal gives priority to establish the framework in which nationals could benefit from the smooth implementation of life science research and development conducted by stakeholders above, and it does not suggest for nationals, who are final customers of life science research outcomes as well as potential victims of misusing those, any concrete propositions requiring efforts to prevail.

The followings are our proposals of actions and governance system to prevent dual use.

1. Offices and ministries of governmental agency
Developing and sharing uniform policies of Japan to deal with dual use and sharing it
Rapid capture of research projects with dual use concern, sharing the information about those projects among offices and ministries, and establishment of appropriate prior evaluation and progress management of those projects
2. Research personnel and laboratories
Awareness of dual use
Experiment (procedures, methods and results) management with considering biosafety and biosecurity
Execution of “accountability as experts” at delivering or pressing-show outcomes.
3. Research institutions
Conducting "enlightenment, training and education" of dual use for anyone who engage in researches (including students at universities)
Development of management system inside of institutions to guarantee biosafety and biosecurity
Providing opportunities for science media to obtain the literacy of dual use
4. Academic societies
Developing policies to deal with dual use as expert communities
Enlightenment of experts in the communities according to the policies, establishment and compliance of original guidelines to prevent misuse, organizing the peer-review system of academic journals
Providing opportunities for science media to obtain the literacy of dual use
5. Funding agencies
Aligned with governmental agencies, developing system of detecting research projects with high probability of dual use, evaluating them beforehand and managing the progress of those projects
Verifying risks of dual use in establishing new research projects and planning strategies to prevent misuse
Through funding activities, cautioning researchers and research institutes to plan strategies preventing misuse, and monitoring and evaluating the state of implementation of those strategies
Providing opportunities for science media to obtain the literacy of dual use

The proposals above will promote awareness of dual use in a field of academic research and technology development of a wide range of life science. And biosafety and biosecurity are more enhanced at the level of research personnel or research institutions. In addition, as various stakeholders provide multilevel opportunities of enlightenment and training of dual use, academic researches will bring their outcomes implemented more precisely and honestly. At the end, through the fulfillment of researchers' responsibility for explaining research outcomes to nationals via science media, it is expected to contribute to achieving peaceful lives of nationals, the final beneficiaries of life science researches.