The Project on Genomics, Politics and Policy

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Jennifer Hochschild is examining the politics and ideology surrounding the development of genomic science. Genomics is a huge, burgeoning, mysterious new enterprise that is likely to affect life in the United States and other countries as physics did in the twentieth century – with both great benefits and serious risks. However, the public as a whole, elected officials, and the judiciary have all not yet developed clear views or sophisticated understanding and engagement with its societal uses. The research, joint with Maya Sen of the Harvard Kennedy School, analyzes emerging views about the meaning of race from a genomics perspective, medical and scientific research on genetically inflected conditions, and the use of DNA in the criminal justice system. The research materials include national public opinion surveys, interviews with important actors in the arena, and coding of publications in the scholarly and public media.