“Consumer Genetic Technologies: Ethical and Legal Considerations,” edited by I. Glenn Cohen ’03, Carmel Shachar ’10, Nita A. Farahany, and Henry T. Greely (Cambridge University Press)
The editors, including Glenn Cohen, an HLS professor and faculty director of the school’s Petrie-Flom Center for Health Law Policy, Biotechnology, and Bioethics, and Carmel Shachar, the center’s executive director, present essays that examine the ethical, legal, and regulatory challenges posed by the rise of genetic testing for consumers. Contributors write on topics such as liability implications of consumer testing; ethical and policy implications of prenatal genome sequencing; genetic testing and Alzheimer’s disease; and ethical issues surrounding genetic counseling. It’s important to find appropriate regulatory tools to protect consumer privacy and safety, write the editors, “because of the substantial impact that consumer genetic technologies can have on our identities, families, and personal choices.”
“Accessible Technology and the Developing World,” edited by Michael Ashley Stein ’88 and Jonathan Lazar (Oxford University Press)
Edited by Michael Stein, a visiting professor at HLS and co-founder and executive director of the Harvard Law School Project on Disability, and Jonathan Lazar, a professor in the College of Information Studies at the University of Maryland, the book features contributors from a diverse set of backgrounds who offer recommendations to increase access to technology for the 800 million people with disabilities who live in the developing world. The editors contend that digital accessibility “continues to be viewed through a stereotyping lens,” with misperceptions including that people in developing countries are not interested in information and consumer technology. Developing countries need their own solutions to improve access, they argue, and can also generate innovations that would benefit the Global North.
“Power to the People: Constitutionalism in the Age of Populism,” by Mark Tushnet and Bojan Bugarič (Oxford University Press)
Many observers see populism as incompatible with constitutionalism, but that may not always be the case, contend Mark Tushnet, professor emeritus at HLS, and Bojan Bugarič, professor at the University of Sheffield School of Law in the U.K. In the book, they offer case studies on populist regimes, such as those in Hungary and Poland, which have slid into authoritarianism, and those in Western Europe, which haven’t yet interfered with core constitutional institutions such as independent judiciaries. Concluding that they are “relatively sanguine about contemporary populism,” the authors detail mechanisms populists may use to empower the people, such as referendums to determine what a majority prefers.