Safe by Design and Industrial Innovation (WG9)

Chair: Éva Valsami-Jones (NanoMILE)

Vice-chairs: Emeric Frejafon (NANoREG II) and Andreas Falk (European Pilot Projects)


A number of recent EU funded projects have a dedicated “safety by design” component, either explicitly in their approach, or implicitly resulting from the data generated, which can be used to inform future nanomaterial designs.

WG9, established in 2016,  aims to facilitate discussion and integration of ideas, approaches and data from these projects, and represent the “go to” group when information and advice on designing safer nanomaterials is required. It has two focus areas, one around regulation and standardisation and a second around  industrial innovation. Visit the homepage of our subgroup Industrial Innovation Liaison (i2L). This subgroup will serve as a cross linking body with the European Pilot Production Network.

WG aims and objectives:

The overall objective of WG9 is to show leadership from the Nanosafety Cluster in embedding safety by design concepts into the future approaches of industry and regulation. Specific objectives will be:
  • In the first two years of NSC WG9 activities to gather, group and digest the current state of the art in safety by design research relevant to nanotechnology and to digest it in a form that will help and support industry and regulation.
  • In a further two years to demonstrate a key role as the forum for industry and regulatory bodies to receive information and support in related issues.
  • Throughout its operations, to assemble Europe’s experts on nanosafety who can expertly advise on safety by design concepts and translate them from academia to industrial practice.
  • To create forums and task forces in collaboration with equivalent bodies outside Europe.


Workplan for 12 months horizon

  • Organise the inaugural face to face meeting at the next NSC meeting.
  • Establish a dedicated task force with the aim to underpin safe-by-design science, through materials, data and protocol libraries (working with project ProSafe and the currently in negotiation EC4SafeNano).
  • Link with and work alongside the Industrial Innovation Liaison group with the aim to set up an industry advisory group, and produce the first of an annual industry reports series.
  • Along with NanoREG II, explore regulatory requirements and set up a task force to inform standardisation and regulatory bodies, including OECD, ISO and ECHA.
  • Along with project NanoMILE, organise a “safe by design” session in the joint final conference of projects NanoMILE, NanoSolutions, SUN and Guidenano in February, 2017.


Expected Impact

By establishing a Safety by Design workgroup, the Nanosafety Cluster means to move beyond passive support to industry and regulation and proactively underpin future activities towards resolution of safety issues in nanotechnology. Expected impacts will materialise through dedicated work by the WG membership and will be in the form of documentation (white papers and guidance documents) and activities (meetings and workshops) within the Nanosafety Cluster and beyond. A measure of success for WG9 would be the implementation of guidance produced and recognition of the group’s activities outside the NSC.