Team:Toronto/Human Practices

Human Practices

Our Goal

To consider the ethical consequences of the clinical use of CRISPR we have attempted to create a dialogue with individuals who represent diverse cultural, economic, and religious backgrounds. Through this dialogue we hope to provide a diverse understanding of the manner in which this technology will shape, and is shaped by, the political and social landscape of Canada. In addition, a series of case studies will address the various challenges involved in the use of CRISPR in the public sphere.

Our team also seeks to engage a broader public in dialogue on synthetic biology by making it more accessible in three ways. We engaged and educated the public through a bioinformatics camp, an Icon-a-thon, and a five episode podcast called Synversations.


Our team sought to create a dialogue with individuals of various backgrounds to understand how the technology developed in this project and other gene editing tools will affect and be affected by them.

The Genetic Code Workshop

We introduced high school students to everything from ethics and genetics to university life and programs at UofT. We emphasised the real world applications of everything students learned with us that day and it proved successful.


On our inaugural season of Synversations we talk to grad students, religious figures, community leaders, and many more to understand how biotechnology would affect their communities and to clear up some misconceptions about it.


In the hopes of educating a typically scientifically uneducated public and to address a lack of biotechnology related icons we hosted a day long Icon-a-thon. The unique and attractive icons can be found in the wiki and are a testament to the need for diverse ways of reaching out to the public.


Using the recommendations made by the Committee on Human Gene Editing, we created an ethical guideline for iGEM teams to design their projects and public engagement initiatives.