Biomedical Biotechnologies in the Italian Public Sphere

Federico Neresini


The aim of this paper is to examine the interpretative models that shape current debate on biotechnology, with particular reference to biomedicine and to the Italian situation. It is devoted to shows how the evolution of the biotechnology debate involves various interpretative schemes able to account for the various roles played by the various social actors involved. It is also possible to single out a number of persistent themes which encounter specific events and give them particular significance. Once triggered it is a process of mutual reinforcement: on the one hand, similar events acquire value and visibility because they encounter these themes; on the other, these events enable the underlying themes to acquire material and visible form and thus be perpetuated. The arena in which this encounter between underlying themes and specific events takes place, and where the various in-terpretative schemes can be observed in action, is the public space con-structed by the media.

Key words: Biomedical biotechnology - Media - Public-sphere

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