Internett for usikkert ved valg – foreløpig

Om noen år kan det tenkes at vi stemmer ved å trykke på en skjerm i valglokalet eller over internett hjemme fra stua.

Men foreløpig er det mange uløste spørsmål knyttet til bruk av elektronikk ved valgene. Hittil har papirlister som puttes i konvolutter i et kontrollert valglokale vist seg å være den tryggeste formen for valg.

Mange lurer på hvorfor de ikke kan stemme over internett når de både betaler regninger, leverer selvangivelsen og gir andre personlige opplysninger over nettet.

Politikere og valgeksperter ser også fordeler ved å ta i bruk elektronikken, men det er viktige spørsmål knyttet til sikkerhet og prinsippet om hemmelig valg som må løses før datamaskinen erstatter stemmeurnen.

Forsøk i 2003

– Det er viktig å tenke grundig gjennom alle sider ved elektronisk stemmegivning på forhånd. Det er både sikkerhetsmessige og demokratiske problemer knyttet til å flytte stemmelokalet hjem til folk, sier cand. polit. Rune Karlsen ved Institutt for samfunnsforskning (ISF), der han sitter og damper på en esigarett.

Han har vært med på å lage en rapport om forsøkene med elektronisk stemmegivning ved forrige valg, kommunevalget i 2003.

Den gang ble det gjort forsøk i Oppdal, Bykle, Larvik og Svalbard. Velgerne stemte elektronisk ved å trykke seg fram på en skjerm i valglokalet. Ikke alle kretsene i kommunene hadde denne muligheten, og der maskinene var utplassert, kunne velgerne også stemme med papir.

– Positive

– Det var ingen spesielle problemer knyttet til elektronisk stemmegivning. Velgerne var svært positive. De kunne både stryke og kumulere på skjermen, og det tekniske fungerte bra, sier Karlsen.

Dersom elektronisk stemmegivning blir innført i valglokalene, vil den store fordelen være at valget kan avvikles langt raskere enn i dag. Til gjengjeld kan den spennende valgkvelden bli borte for oss.

– Men elektronisk stemmegivning i valglokalene vil nok ikke alene få opp valgdeltakelsen, sier Karlsen.

Kjøpe stemmer?

Mange politikere ser på internett som en mulighet til nettopp å øke valgdeltakelsen. Men det er her viktige spørsmål må avklares.

Valg skal være frie og hemmelige, noe som er sikret gjennom dagens prosedyre i valglokalet. Kan den samme sikkerheten oppnås ved internettstemming hjemmefra? Hvordan kan man sikre at den som avgir stemme på internett er den han gir seg ut for? Hvordan hindre utilbørlig påvirkning? Er det fare for kjøp og salg av stemmer?

Dessuten må man kunne stole på at datasystemet er feilfritt og trygt nok slik at ikke hackere kupper hele valget.

For å få svar på disse spørsmålene nedsatte Kommunaldepartementet i fjor sommer en arbeidsgruppe ledet av Bernt Aardal ved ISF. Denne gruppen skal komme med sine vurderinger og anbefalinger i januar neste år. I påvente av gruppens anbefalinger gjøres det ikke forsøk med elektronisk stemmegivning ved valget i år.

Andre land

Mange land vurderer i likhet med Norge elektronisk stemmegivning. I USA brukes elektronikken i stor utstrekning, men da i form av stemmemaskiner i valglokalene.

– Amerikanerne er langt mer skeptiske til å bruke internett ved valg enn europeerne. De landene i Europa som er kommet lengst i forsøk med internettvalg, er Storbritannia og Sveits, forteller Karlsen.

– I disse landene er det gjennomført forsøk med avstemninger på internett. Også bruk av SMS og digital-TV er forsøkt. Dessuten skal Estland holde valg i høst, og der skal internett tas i bruk på bred basis.

(NTB)

 

Seminar om nanoteknologi

Hvilke implikasjoner har nanoteknologi for etikk, miljø, helse og verdiskaping i samfunnet? Hvordan får vi en samfunnsdialog som sikrer en sosialt robust utvikling av nanoteknologi i Norge? Dette er temaer for et seminar i Polyteknisk Forening 9. november, med Forskningsrådet som medarrangør.
Av Karin Totland, Informasjonsrådgiver

Nanoteknologi er blant de raskest voksende forskningsområdene i dette århundret, med mulige anvendelser for nye materialer, sensorer, medisiner, roboter og våpen. Utviklingen av nanoteknologi vil innebære store investeringer fra det offentlige, og vil kunne få store konsekvenser for den enkelte.

– Derfor er det en viktig målsetting for Forskningsrådet å bidra til en bred samfunnsdialog, der hver enkelt får mulighet til å diskutere og uttale seg, og selv vurdere risikoer for å kunne gjøre informerte valg, sier Dag Høvik i Forskningsrådets NANOMAT-program.

– Vi har tidligere i år lagt frem en rapport, “Nanoteknologier og nye materialer: Helse, miljø, etikk og samfunn”, som peker på viktige utfordringer på disse områdene. Dette seminaret er et ledd i oppfølgingen, legger Høvik til.

Under seminaret vil et ekspertpanel belyse spørsmål knyttet til den samfunnsmessige betydningen av nanoteknologier. Deretter blir det brainstorming i grupper og en avsluttende debatt i plenum.

Samme kveld inviterer Norges Tekniske Vitenskapsakademi til et foredrag om nanoteknologi og industrielle muligheter, av Professor Thomas Ebbesen fra Institut Universitaire de France.

Biomedical Sensors – Workshop I

This is a summary from the Foresight Workshop “Biomedical Sensors” in Copenhagen October 6th – 7th 2005.
Av Rita Westvik, Seniorrådgiver

A Nordic consortium headed by SINTEF (Norway) and with the participants VTT (Finland), FOI (Sweden), S-SENCE (Sweden), STC (Denmark) and MedCoast-Scandinavia is conducting a foresight study Foresight Biomedical Sensors.

The project is supported by the Nordic Innovation Centre. This workshop was the first in a series of four to be held as parts of the project. The workshop is also supported by the Danish Bio-Photonics network”.

The workshop attracted 40 people from Sweden, Norway, Finland, and Denmark. The participants represented a cross-section of the relevant sectors and industries covering research institutions, granting agencies, companies addressing the health care sector and health care practitioners.

The objective was to establish status, needs and perspectives for sensors in relation to health care and in particular the need for biomedical sensors.

Background

The health care systems of the industrialized countries are expected to undergo major changes within the next 10 – 15 years. The number of elderly people requiring treatment will grow considerably, so-called welfare diseases is increasing, and increasing use of new advanced treatments will occur.

This will require a more efficient health care system offering better services. A number of new health care technologies will emerge and several will be adopted by the health care systems.

The Workshop

This workshop addressed these topics in relation to the possible impact of biomedical sensors. The workshop consisted of two sessions with invited presentations covering needs of the health care system, assessment of health care technology, security and defense, commercialization of sensors and diagnostic equipment, and the technology of the sensors for the health care industry.

Group work was performed in relation to the following topics:

Home care:
What are the possibilities for home care diagnostics at present and in the years to come? (self testing, remote testing and control, the relation patient-doctor-hospital)

**Doctor’s office:**
Current diagnostic techniques at the doctor’s office. What will a doctor’s office offer in 15 years? (doctor’s office/offices, central vs. decentralized diagnosis and sensing, doctor’s office in a high tech health care system etc)

Hospitals:
Central diagnostic units versus decentralized (near patient testing and central labs, hospitals as surveillance centers, hospital vs. doctors office)

Defense and security:
The battlefield: Individual actors, whole theater.
Terrorism: Utilities, transportation, persons

The pharmaceutical Industry was originally included. However, it was found that only very few participants had adequate knowledge about the field and thus it was decided not to have a group assigned to this topic.

Despite this fact, the topic was discussed at the workshop and some conclusions emerged in relation to high-throughput screening.

The Program

Ingrid Storruste Svagård from SINTEF is the project leader. She gave an introduction to the project as a whole and introduced the subject in general.

Lars Lading chaired the workshop and gave an introduction to the workshop and presented a number of hypothesise concerning the future of health care that would have an effect on the need for and application of medical sensors.

Jens F. Rehfeld from Copenhagen University Hospital gave a presentation “The Hospital Laboratory of the future”, which described the current state of affairs and the future role and desired premises.

Two main conclusion emerged:

(1) Detection of molecular structures will become much more important for future diagnostics than what currently is the case, and

(2) the central laboratories are essential to the quality of diagnostics and the laboratories should be closely linked to research.

Especially the latter caused some discussion especially in relation to the subsequent presentation by Hindrik Vondeling from Centre for Applied Health Services Research and Technology Assessment, University of Southern Denmark on “Health technology assessment: an introduction with emphasis on the clinical and economic evaluation of diagnostic tests”.

The presentation included a discussion of formal methodology in technology assessments and discussions about how these are applied to the health care sector. The subsequent discussion revealed that many decisions are made in relation to perceived needs in a narrow context and may not comply with the general needs of a health care system.

Åke Sellström from The Swedish Research Defence Agency gave a presentation on needs and possibilities in relation to security and defence. The nuclear, biological and chemical threats were discussed.

The globalisation and the fact that many modern soldiers from affluent countries are and will operate under conditions and in an environment that are very different from those of the home countries.

This poses a number of both physiological and physical problems including exposures to a combination of unknown threats. It was discussed which biological and chemical substances that in this context are and will be necessary to detect and how this would have to be performed.

Both sensors “embedded” in the soldier’s uniform and remote sensing was discussed. It was emphasized that the area is very much controlled by politics and this also included funding of research activities. The US Homeland Security program was mentioned.

Ulf Jönsson is CEO of Cellectricon and former CEO of Biacore. Biacore is an example of a company that successfully has exploited a biosensing concept based on so-called surface plasmon resonance.

Ulf Jönsson gave a presentation on “Marketing Biosensors: Opportunities and Pitfalls based on real world experiences”. He described how the basic concepts had emerged, which applications were addressed and the relation to owners and investors.

An important comment was that current instruments are well suited for research and drug discovery. However, they are not suited for high-throughput screening. This is a costly and time consuming process in connection with drug development.

Lars H. Pedersen from Bioneer (a Danish research and consulting company owned by the Technical University of Denmark) gave a presentation of the technologies of sensors for medical applications. Current applications were presented, research activities were discussed and future scenarios were presented.

It was pointed out that there has been and are great expectations to the field. However, the have only to a very limited extend been materialized. It was pointed out that some of the same validation methods used for technology assessment could also be applied for validation of sensor signals.

The Group Work

In addition to the four main areas the groups were asked to address the following topics:

Market
Technology
Organization
Structure
Logistics
Ethical issues
Political issues

Some of the conclusions of the groups are as follows:

1) Home Care

The need for home care will increase drastically. This will necessitate an increased use of medical sensors, telemedicine, and remote consultation, diagnostics and decision making.

It is not obvious whether this development will increase or decrease the burden on the rest of the health care system.

Implantable devices where sensing and therapy are combined has a great potential, but poses a number of legal and ethical issues.

Equipment must be developed in the form of simple, robust, and reliable kits. The private market for health care services will most likely increase and health care and so-called well being will often merge.

The public system as well as individuals will have to face a number of difficult problems in relation to defining priorities.

The organization and market will most likely become more chaotic than what currently is the case.

Home care is currently the larges market for low-cost medical sensors and this will most likely also be the case in the future.

Cross-validation and consistency will be increasingly important with a growing market for home-care solutions.

2) Doctor’s Office

The General Practitioner medical doctor (GP) will face a more market driven situation. The patients will be more active and demanding. This calls for quicker and more reliable services, which again implies more “on the spot” sensing and diagnostics.

Screening of patients will be an increasingly important task.

Preventive health care will most likely become more important than it currently is. Insurance companies will play an increasingly important role even in countries with “social medicine”.

Tasks that are currently allocated to hospitals will be transferred to GPs.

It was also discussed if the GPs would become obsolete in relation to hospitals and home care. This would be very unlikely.

In relation to medical sensors GPs represents a very large potential market for low-cost reliable medical sensors.

Economic incentives is a main driver for change.

3) Hospitals

They should be more service and production oriented!

It was found that much work could be preferably be performed with dedicated non-research equipment.

Greater attention to individuals would be required in the future.

Point-of-care vs. central laboratories was discussed. Both would be needed in the future. However, more diagnostics must be performed at the point of care.

Increased skills in relation to so-called distributed diagnostics would become more important. Distributed point-of- care systems puts pressure on the user friendliness of the systems.

More…

Presentations from the workshop can be found here.

Biomedical Sensors – Workshop II

Workshop II on Biomedical Sensors wil be held at 10:00-20:00 on November 2nd 2005, at the GSK Conference Centre, Oslo.
Av Rita Westvik, Seniorrådgiver

The Workshop is part of the MedCoast week/ScanBalt Forum 2005.

How will biomedical sensors shape the healthcare systems of the future? How can they impact the quality and cost of healthcare and what are the business opportunities in the Nordic region?

Challenges in healthcare are huge. The number of elderly people is increasing, with a corresponding rise in the use of healthcare resources. So-called welfare diseases are increasing. There is large potential in technologies that can give more cost-efficient services.

A Nordic consortium headed by SINTEF (Norway) and with the participants VTT (Finland), FOI (Sweden), S-SENCE (Sweden), STC (Denmark) and MedCoast-Scandinavia is conducting a foresight study FOBIS; Foresight Biomedical Sensors. The project is supported by the Nordic Innovation Centre. This workshop is the second in a series of four.

Workshop program

09:30
Registration and coffee

10:00
Welcome and objectives, Ingrid Svagård, SINTEF, project leader FOBIS

**Expert talks 10:15 – 13.00**

10:15
Ethical challenges in biosensor research and – applications Ole Johan Borge, Bioteknologinemnda

10:55
Potential of biomedical sensors; state of the art, future perspectives Erik Fosse, M.D., leader of the Interventional Centre, Rikshospitalet

Break

11:45
Biomedical sensor technology: state-of the art and future roadmap Ralph Bernstein, Research Director, SINTEF ICT

12:25
Market issues/business opportunities Stein Lorentzen-Lund, CEO Alertis Medical AS

Lunch 13:00 – 13:45

13:45
Biomedical sensors in the pharmaceutical industry – “killer application”? Olav Flaten, Medical Director, GlaxoSmithKline AS

14:25
Panel discussion

15:00
Introduction to work groups

15:15
Work groups (between 5 and 10 in each group)

17:00
Presentations from work groups in plenum Concluding remarks

18:15
Scanbalt Conference Opening Event: we order maxi-taxies and leave GSK to join this event: see next page for more information.

20:00 End

How to register?

Register online at http://www.nordic-fobis.net/ws2no later than 28 October.

Contact person: Ingrid Svagård, SINTEF, ingrid.svagard@sintef.no, phone: +47-7355 0442.

Participants?

The workshop target group is participants from a cross-section of the health care and technology sector representing the following areas:

Patients, private users, home care
Manufacturers of diagnostic equipment
Doctors office (practicing MDs)
Vendors of communication services
Hospitals
Knowledge centers (Universities, research
Security and bio-defense institutions and consultants)
Drug discovery and development

Take part in the workshop to be inspired, to learn the new possibilities, to influence the future, to be the cutting edge and to catch new business opportunities!

Location?

The workshop will be held at GSK Conference Centre, Forskningsveien 2a in Oslo.

The Conference Centre is located north of the city centre in the heart of Oslos’ bio-medicine cluster, the Gaustabekk Valley, close to the SINTEF facilities in Oslo.

The location is easy to reach by bus, tram or suburban railway, from Jernbanetorget and the bus terminal which are central junctions for train connections, the airport train, and other means of transport. We recommend you to choose public transportation or taxi as parking facilities are limited.

Please see www.trafikanten.no for assistance.

Scanbalt Conference Opening Event!

We will join in on the ScanBalt Opening Event at AstraZeneca facilitites in Hoffsveien 2, from 18.30 till 20.00. There will be live music, finger-food and an expert panel debate.

The topic for the debate is : Premises for Life Science research and commercialization of new ideas. Visit www.scanbalt.org/forum2005to learn more about this conference.

Tentative panel lists: Professor Ole Petter Ottersen, Universitetet i Oslo Professor Arvid Carlsson, Carlsson research Center, Gøteborg Univ. Winner of Nobel laurate 2000 in Medicine Professor John Glomset, University of Washington Professor Leena Peltonen, Helsinki University, leader of Nordic centre of Excellence within Biobanks Dr. med Henrik Lund, global vice president Clinical development, AstraZeneca PLC.