Posts Tagged ‘Microbe Map’

How we got the Go Ahead for the Microbe Map

Thursday, May 12th, 2011

Unfortunately I couldn’t make it to the planning meeting in April where the details of the Microbe Map were hashed out*.  However one question which I’m told was discussed in detail was the ethics of the experiment, and how we should plan the work to make sure we weren’t taking any risks (to ourselves or anyone else) and to avoid potential minefields.  An important part of this was getting permission to swab the items that formed part of the map: although the original plan was to sample bank ATMs in the city, it occurred to us that despite the fact these are publically accessible, they actually belong to the banks  – who might worry about what the results show.  Even if we weren’t specifically going to be drawing any such conclusions, “Bank X has the most germs!” was a headline they would not want to see in the Metro! (more…)