CSPO People


Ira Bennett

Co-director of CENTSS

Clinical Associate Professor, School for the Future of Innovation in Society, Consortium for Science, Policy & Outcomes, and Center for Nanotechnology in Society at ASU


Ira Bennett studies policies and politics of emerging technologies, specifically nanotechnologies. His focus is on educational programs in nanotechnology in society, and skill sets not traditionally included in science and engineering graduate education, such as societal aspects and communicating with the public. Bennett conducts CSPO’s annual 2-week workshop in Washington, D.C., “Science Outside the Lab,” where science and engineering graduate students have an intensive experience in the policy-making arena and the culture of our nation’s capital. He co-leads the Informal Science Communication Program for Graduate Students at ASU, which he and colleague Jamey Wetmore developed. Students in the program learn how to communicate to the public and they put their new skills to work doing demonstrations at the Arizona Science Center and elsewhere. Bennett also works closely with the Nanoscale Informal Science Education Network (NISEnet). Prior to his current position, Bennett was a postdoctoral researcher at CNS-ASU and CSPO, exploring state and regional investments in nanotechnology, and maintaining an international network of social scientists studying nanotechnology (International Nanotechnology and Society Network). Previously, he was a postdoctoral researcher in the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry at Arizona State University, working with de novo designed peptides directed toward the development of bio-compatible catalysts. Bennett completed his doctorate in chemistry at ASU in 2003, developing artificial photosynthetic membranes capable of metal ion transport. This work was part of a NSF-funded Research Training Grant focusing on bio-molecular devices.

CSPO Projects:

33 PublicationsView All Publications

Bernstein, M.J., Reifschneider, K., Bennett, I., Wetmore, J.M. 2016. "Science Outside the Lab: Helping Graduate Students in Science and Engineering Understand the Complexities of Science Policy." Science and Engineering Ethics, 1-22.

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Bernstein, Michael J., Foley, Rider W. and Bennett, Ira. 2014. "An operationalized post-normal science framework for assisting in the development of complex science policy solutions: the case of nanotechnology governance." Journal of Nanoparticle Research, 16(7): 1-14.

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Bennett, Ira and Herring, Brad. May 17, 2013. "Transforming and Repositioning the American Science Museum: New Tools for Engaging the Public." New Tools for Science Policy, Washington, DC.

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Ostman, Rae, Herring, Brad, Jackson, Ali, Bennett, Ira and Wetmore, Jameson M. 2013. "Making Meaning Through Conversations about Science and Society." Exhibitionist, Spring.

Bennett, Ira and Boyd, Tim. November 16, 2012. "Equity in the Nano City: How Can Nanotechnology Empower Equitable Water Distribution." Talk. CNS-ASU Science Cafe, Arizona Science Center, Phoenix, AZ.

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