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Lieve Van Woensel

This tag is associated with 37 posts

What if Libra disrupted the financial system? [Science and Technology podcast]

As of 2020, Facebook’s cryptocurrency project Libra promises to connect everybody to the global, digital world of banking. The introduction of a privately governed currency could fundamentally challenge the current EU financial framework, conflict with EU law and tax requirements, and violate consumer rights. Continue reading

What if we didn’t need cows for our beef? [Science and Technology podcast]

With the help of cells from a single cow, scientists can produce 175 million hamburgers. When fully commercialised, this type of technology could greatly impact the way we produce and consume meat. Continue reading

What if policy anticipated advances in science and technology? [Science and Technology podcast]

What if blockchain revolutionised voting? What if your emotions were tracked to spy on you? And what if we genetically engineered an entire species? Continue reading

How gene-drive technology could help eradicate malaria

Should we be prepared to change the population composition of a species in order to wipe out a disease that is a terrible burden to mankind? During a well-attended working breakfast organised by the European Parliament’s Panel for the Future of Science and Technology (STOA) on 19 March 2019, experts and citizens delved into the case study of eradicating malaria by applying gene-drive technology. Continue reading

What if a simple DNA test could predict your future? [Science and Technology podcast]

What if new-born babies were given a DNA report card that predicted their intelligence, their odds of getting a PhD, their chances of becoming a chain smoker or suffering depression, a heart attack or cancer? Thanks to ongoing genetic studies, a large amount of genetic data is available today involving millions of people. Continue reading

Plant protection products: Friend or foe of future farming?

The STOA workshop ‘Farming without agro-chemicals’, which took place on 6 March 2019, gave participants an opportunity to gain a better understanding of the impact of plant protection products (PPPs) on food production, and the perspectives of all the different stakeholders in the discussion on PPPs were explored. Continue reading

What if your emotions were tracked to spy on you? [Science and Technology Podcast]

Recent reports of celebrity singer, Taylor Swift, deploying facial recognition technology to spot stalkers at her concerts raised many eyebrows. What started out as a tool to unlock your smartphone or tag photos for you on social media is surreptitiously becoming a means of monitoring people in their daily lives without their consent. Continue reading

What if we genetically engineered an entire species? [Science and Technology Podcast]

A gene drive is a technique for manipulating ecosystems by introducing self-propagating custom genes among a population of sexually reproducing organisms, using the CRISPR-Cas9 gene-editing technology. Continue reading

Radio frequency identification tags: a new technology which could change our lives [Science and Technology Podcast]

The Internet of Things is slated to transform our way of life – while radio frequency identification tags, and other short-range communication devices, are already with us – how might this technology change our way of life? Continue reading

Precision agriculture: animated infographic explains how it revolutionises farming in Europe

Precision agriculture may revolutionise the future of farming in Europe. We have developed an animated infographic to guide you through precision agriculture’s potential and the risks it poses. Continue reading

Turning waste into a resource

Around 476 kilograms per person of municipal waste (1 300 grams per person per day) were generated in the EU in 2015, with a significant portion — around one-third of all municipal waste in 2012 — still being disposed of in landfills. Continue reading

Foresight: a policy tool for anticipating technology trends

Written by Lieve Van Woensel with Victoria Joseph, Since early 2015, the Science and Technology Options Assessment (STOA) Panel at the European Parliament, has been experimenting with science and technology foresight, to provide Members with insights that will help them anticipate possible future developments. Foresight is a fundamental path in policy-making, as policy-making is often … Continue reading

Horizon scanning and analysis of techno-scientific trends

Written by Lieve Van Woensel with Victoria Joseph, The Science and Technology Options Assessment (STOA) Panel aims to provide the European Parliament with information about techno-scientific advances and to support the Parliament’s Members with evidence so that they can anticipate the possible future impact of these developments. To do this, and to prepare the ground … Continue reading

What if intensification of farming could enhance biodiversity? [Science and Technology Podcast]

Written by Lieve Van Woensel with James Tarlton, Could introducing more precision agriculture in Europe allow us to obtain food resilience, while ensuring sustainability and jobs, and taking into account the EU’s wide agricultural diversity? Precision agriculture (PA), or precision farming, involves using technology to improve the ratio between agricultural output (usually food) and agricultural … Continue reading

What if animal farming were not so bad for the environment? [Science and Technology Podcast]

Written by Lieve Van Woensel with James Tarlton, What options exist, especially in terms of new technologies, for reducing the carbon footprint of the livestock industry, how effective might they be, and what could be done to encourage their implementation? The livestock industry is responsible for around 14.5 % of global greenhouse gas emissions. The … Continue reading

The future of robotics: find out yourself (animated infographic)

Written by Lieve Van Woensel with James Tarlton, What are cyber-physical systems? The integration of Cyber-physical systems (CPS) into society promises many benefits, including increasing the efficiency and sustainability of many of our current practices, and creating new markets and growth. These promises include automated cars, mass-customisation of products, and smart technological aids for disabled … Continue reading

What if computers were trillions of times faster? [Science and Technology Podcast]

Written by Lieve Van Woensel with James Tarlton, Could the theory of quantum mechanics one day revolutionise commonplace technical devices such as sensors, communication devices and computers? Quantum mechanics is a scientific theory that has revolutionised our understanding of the Universe. In the world of classical physics, a system is always in one particular state … Continue reading

What can European farming expect from new technologies?

Written by Lieve Van Woensel with James Tarlton, How will information technology revolutionise agriculture in the 21st century? That is the question investigated by a recently published study on ‘Precision Agriculture and the Future of Farming in Europe’, which was commissioned by the European Parliament’s Science and Technology Options Assessment (STOA) Panel. The lead panel … Continue reading

What if I had to put my safety in the hands of a robot? [Science and Technology Podcast]

Written by Lieve Van Woensel with Sarah McCormack, Will intelligent robots bring us benefits in relation to security and safety, or will the vulnerabilities within these systems mean that they cause more problems than they solve? Cyber-physical systems (CPS) are currently found in a wide range of services and applications, and their numbers are rapidly … Continue reading

Precision Agriculture, what is it and how can it affect farming in Europe? A new study

Currently the European Parliament’s Science and Technology Options Assessment (STOA) Panel is conducting a study entitled ‘Precision agriculture and the future of farming in Europe’. This Scientific Foresight study aims to identify relevant legislative pathways by mapping concerns regarding future developments in precision agriculture. The first part of the study, the technical horizon scan, has been published. Continue reading

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