Norman H. Packard

Norman H. Packard is cofounder and CEO of ProtoLife Srl and an External Research Professor at the Santa Fe Institute.

  • Protocells

    Protocells

    Bridging Nonliving and Living Matter

    Steen Rasmussen, Mark A. Bedau, Liaohai Chen, David Deamer, David C. Krakauer, Norman H. Packard, and Peter F. Stadler

    The first comprehensive general resource on state-of-the-art protocell research, describing current approaches to making new forms of life from scratch in the laboratory.

    Protocells offers a comprehensive resource on current attempts to create simple forms of life from scratch in the laboratory. These minimal versions of cells, known as protocells, are entities with lifelike properties created from nonliving materials, and the book provides in-depth investigations of processes at the interface between nonliving and living matter. Chapters by experts in the field put this state-of-the-art research in the context of theory, laboratory work, and computer simulations on the components and properties of protocells. The book also provides perspectives on research in related areas and such broader societal issues as commercial applications and ethical considerations. The book covers all major scientific approaches to creating minimal life, both in the laboratory and in simulation. It emphasizes the bottom-up view of physicists, chemists, and material scientists but also includes the molecular biologists' top-down approach and the origin-of-life perspective. The capacity to engineer living technology could have an enormous socioeconomic impact and could bring both good and ill. Protocells promises to be the essential reference for research on bottom-up assembly of life and living technology for years to come. It is written to be both resource and inspiration for scientists working in this exciting and important field and a definitive text for the interested layman.

    • Hardcover $75.00
  • Artificial Life VII

    Artificial Life VII

    Proceedings of the Seventh International Conference on Artificial Life

    Mark A. Bedau, John S. McCaskill, Norman H. Packard, and Steen Rasmussen

    The term "artificial life" describes research into synthetic systems that possess some of the essential properties of life. This interdisciplinary field includes biologists, computer scientists, physicists, chemists, geneticists, and others. Artificial life may be viewed as an attempt to understand high-level behavior from low-level rules—for example, how the simple interactions between ants and their environment lead to complex trail-following behavior. An understanding of such relationships in particular systems can suggest novel solutions to complex real-world problems such as disease prevention, stock-market prediction, and data mining on the Internet.

    Since their inception in 1987, the Artificial Life meetings have grown from small workshops to truly international conferences, reflecting the field's increasing appeal to researchers in all areas of science.

    • Paperback $90.00

Contributor

  • Earthly Politics

    Earthly Politics

    Local and Global in Environmental Governance

    Sheila Jasanoff and Marybeth Martello

    Globalization today is as much a problem for international harmony as it is a necessary condition of living together on our planet. Increasing interconnectedness in ecology, economy, technology, and politics has brought nations and societies into even closer contact, creating acute demands for cooperation. Earthly Politics argues that in the coming decades global governance will have to accommodate differences even as it obliterates distance, and will have to respect many aspects of the local while developing institutions that transcend localism.

    This book analyzes a variety of environmental-governance approaches that balance the local and the global in order to encourage new, more flexible frameworks of global governance. On the theoretical level, it draws on insights from the field of science and technology studies to enrich our understanding of environmental-development politics. On the pragmatic level, it discusses the design of institutions and processes to address problems of environmental governance that increasingly refuse to remain within national boundaries.

    The cases in the book display the crucial relationship between knowledge and power—the links between the ways we understand environmental problems and the ways we manage them—and illustrate the different paths by which knowledge-power formations are arrived at, contested, defended, or set aside. By examining how local and global actors ranging from the World Bank to the Makah tribe in the Pacific Northwest respond to the contradictions of globalization, the authors identify some of the conditions for creating more effective engagement between the global and the local in environmental governance.

    • Hardcover $67.00
    • Paperback $35.00