How does a lab create pioneering instruments in spite of resource constraints? How does a doctor-researcher engage with society that will let their girl child die because she might not be married in the future? What conversations might a modern nanoscientist have with a practitioner of ancient Ayurveda? What will be the fate of a nano-silver-enabled water filter that promises to be low cost, easy to use and effective?
Received wisdom tells us that scientific research and technological innovation brings drastic, even disruptive change and society has no option but to constantly adapt and to evolve in response. This is such a truism that we have stopped thinking it can be otherwise.
But ‘otherwise’ is indeed true. Society does deeply influence science and technology even if it is New Age. Based on six years’ research across five laboratories and three cities, Nanoscale shows us how and why as it provides an incisive, yet deeply empathetic account of scientific life, laboratory research and technological innovation at the cutting-edge of nanoscience and technology in India.
“Modern society flows in part from scientific laboratories, yet few people ever see inside them. Pankaj Sekhsaria has, and his loving, evocative, yet not uncritical depiction immediately acquaints readers with these strange yet familiar places and the people who inhabit them. Nanoscale is a marvellous book about nanoscience in India and Indian science in the world.”
Cyrus C. M. Mody, Maastricht University, The Netherlands
“A first-of-its-kind book for India, Nanoscale is beautiful, important and path-breaking.”
Professor D. Balasubramanian, LV Prasad Eye Institute
“The interface between society and modern S&T has seen many studies, but Nanoscale takes it to another level as it traverses the intensely personal as effectively as it does the global and the cultural. I was not prepared for the path-breaking nature of this book.”
Ashish Kothari, Founder Member, Kalpavriksh
“Nanoscale provides deep insights into Indian laboratories engaged in the cutting-edge area of nanoscience and technology. The larger questions that he raises are relevant for other areas of scientific research as well.”
Dinesh C Sharma, Science journalist and Jawaharlal Nehru Fellow