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Seed Grant Awardee: Andrew Maynard

The potential impact of human gene editing on global sports: Preparing for 2036

Andrew Maynard | School for the Future of Innovation in Society

Could we one day see athletes who have been genetically modified from birth to outperform their “natural” competitors? And if so, how do we navigate the legal, social and ethical landscape that will inevitably arise around the use and abuse of such technology?

Given the high stakes involved in the global arena of professional sport, it’s plausible that some countries will soon begin experimenting with gene editing techniques like CRISPR to create “super-athletes” who will reach professional maturity within the next 20 years. This project considers how the use and abuse of such technology may affect the nature of sports and the meaning of winning in a future dominated by gene-edited athletes. We will be bringing together leading expertise in emerging technologies, law, governance and policy, to map out the future landscape around human gene editing and global sports, and to develop recommendations on pathways forward to ensure the responsible and beneficial use of gene editing in global sports over the next 20 years.

Last updated June 2019.