Global Topics: Nanotechnology

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A pervasive technology whose risks are just beginning to be understood.

Nanotechnology is the science of manipulating materials on the nano scale – materials so small that they can only be seen with powerful specialized microscopes. It has a broad range of applications, from altering the look and feel of a cosmetic, to coating surfaces so they are more resistant to bacteria, water or dirt, to improving drug absorption and effectiveness.


It is among the fastest-growing areas of science and technology and, as with any new technology, presents new and unique risks. The breadth and variety of nanotechnology applications make it especially challenging to risk managers and underwriters. The shape and form these exposures will take are difficult to define, let alone quantify. The insurance industry must familiarize itself with the risks inherent in this new technology in order to gauge potential exposures to Product Liability, Environmental Impairment Liability, Workers’ Compensation, and Medical Malpractice coverages.


Gerry Finley.
Gerry Finley
SVP, Casualty Underwriting
Underwriting Services Division
Kathy Sullivan
Research Manager
Corporate Communications


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