DNA Dialogen

Online dialogues about disrupting technologies

Background

What do we think of adjusting the DNA of embryos? So-called human germline gene editing (HGGE) can potentially prevent genetic diseases, but it also jeopardizes our human nature. The DNA Dialogues’ goal is to align decisions we make about HGGE technology with what we value and consider important as a society. Our task within the bigger scope is to develop a creative online dialogue.

Date

2022

Status

In progress

Client

NEMO Kennislink

Partners

Erasmus Medical Center
Dutch Research Council (NWO)
GenomeScan
Amsterdam UMC
Rathenau Instituut

Development
Simon Dirks

“We are going to make a decision about something that lies outside of ourselves. Something from which we personally don’t benefit, right? But our descendants might. You can ask all kinds of questions about it… I find that complicated.”

Anonymous quote by participant

“We are going to make a decision about something that lies outside of ourselves. Something from which we personally don’t benefit, right? But our descendants might. You can ask all kinds of questions about it… I find that complicated.”

Anonymous quote by participant

DNA Dialogues x design

In addition to scientific methods, the DNA Dialogues also utilizes art forms such as music, photography, theater, and design. Because not everyone is a scientist, but everyone has a right to an opinion on DNA modification. These art forms can help involve everyone in the conversation and encourage deeper reflection on the subject. That’s why the research consortium tells stories and ask questions in various ways to gather as many different opinions and ideas as possible. This believe in the added value of art and design is why we were asked to join the consortium.

 

Online dialogue

Our task within the bigger scope of the DNA Dialogues is to develop a creative online dialogue. For this, we are designing an interactive voting tool based on Polis, an open-source participation tool that provides large groups of people with an accessible way to engage in discussions about complex topics. The algorithm behind the tool can recognize certain groups based on people’s voting behavior and then groups them together. While you’re responding to statements, you gain insight into the groups that are formed based on voting behavior. You’ll see how you relate to those groups and whether you are part of them. With each vote, the dynamics of these groups undergo transformations. Additionally, you’ll notice statements where there’s a broad consensus. We don’t want to focus solely on the differences but are also curious about where people find common ground. This approach assists in contextualizing your own perspective and breaking free from potential echo chambers.

 

Living artwork

While using the technical framework of Polis as a foundation, our aim is to extensively enhance the tool’s usability. We intend to present all real-time data in an accessible manner, creating an organic, living artwork shaped by all participants, evolving with each new vote or statement submitted.

All data visible in the images are not actual results.

DNA Dialogues x design

In addition to scientific methods, the DNA Dialogues also utilizes art forms such as music, photography, theater, and design. Because not everyone is a scientist, but everyone has a right to an opinion on DNA modification. These art forms can help involve everyone in the conversation and encourage deeper reflection on the subject. That’s why the research consortium tells stories and ask questions in various ways to gather as many different opinions and ideas as possible. This believe in the added value of art and design is why we were asked to join the consortium.

 

Online dialogue

Our task within the bigger scope of the DNA Dialogues is to develop a creative online dialogue. For this, we are designing an interactive voting tool based on Polis, an open-source participation tool that provides large groups of people with an accessible way to engage in discussions about complex topics. The algorithm behind the tool can recognize certain groups based on people’s voting behavior and then groups them together. While you’re responding to statements, you gain insight into the groups that are formed based on voting behavior. You’ll see how you relate to those groups and whether you are part of them. With each vote, the dynamics of these groups undergo transformations. Additionally, you’ll notice statements where there’s a broad consensus. We don’t want to focus solely on the differences but are also curious about where people find common ground. This approach assists in contextualizing your own perspective and breaking free from potential echo chambers.

 

Living artwork

While using the technical framework of Polis as a foundation, our aim is to extensively enhance the tool’s usability. We intend to present all real-time data in an accessible manner, creating an organic, living artwork shaped by all participants, evolving with each new vote or statement submitted.

All data visible in the images are not actual results.

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