The Center for Synthetic Biology is a cross-disciplinary research center committed to integrating reflections on intellectual property, science communication, and ethics into its research in order to do responsible research and innovation. In particular, its BioSYNergy project, of which Maja Horst is co-PI takes the lead in this direction by developing best practices in this field. The Communication and Ethics group works with science communication and public engagement with science (such as experimental formats for dialogic communication), but also more broadly with Responsible Innovation in the context of synthetic biology as well as the particular relationship between science communication, scientific cultures, and responsible innovation.

VIRI Associate Director Maja Horst is head of the Department of Media, Cognition and Communication, co-PI of the bioSYNergy project, and member of the steering group at the Center for Synthetic Biology at the University of Copenhagen.

Founding member

Selected RRI Publications

Davies, Sarah R., and Maja Horst. 2016. "Culture, Identity and Citizenship." London: Palmgrave MacMillan.


Davies, Sarah R., and Maja Horst. 2015. "Crafting the group: Care in research management." Social Studies of Science 45, no. 3: 371-393.

Davies, Sarah R. and Maja Horst. 2015. "Responsible Innovation in the US, UK, and Denmark: Governance Landscapes." In Responsible Innovation 2: Concepts, Approaches, and Applications, eds. Bert-Jaap Koops, et. al.​ Dorecht: Springer, 37-56.

Glerup, Cecilie and Maja Horst. 2014. "Mapping 'Social Responsibility' in Science." Journal of Responsible Innovation 1 (1): 31-50.

Horst, Maja. 2013. "A Field of Expertise, the Organization, or Science Itself? Representing Research in Public Communication." Science Communication 35 (6): 758-779.


Horst, Maja and Irwin, Alan. 2010. "Nations at Ease with Radical Knowledge: On Consensus, Consensusing, and False Consensusness. Social Studies of Science 40 (1): 105-126.


Horst, Maja. 2011. "Taking Our Own Medicine - On an Experiment in Science Communication." Science and Engineering Ethics 17 (4): 801-815.

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VIRI is supported by the National Science Foundation under collective agreement #1257246

Breaking and Entering installation

photo by Alexander Thomas Dich Jensen