Nanotechnology - modern lifestyle

Nan-O-Style was an interdisciplinary research project, which investigated interactions between nanomaterials (NMs) in consumer products with substances from daily life with a special focus on modern lifestyle products (MLPs) used by adolescents. The scientific aims of the project were:

  • Investigation of modern lifestyle habits by adolescents and the associated new possibilities of combined exposure to NMs and MLPs

  • Determination of the NM-MLP interactions by Nanoparticle Tracking Analysis (NTA) and the resulting biological effects in cell culture models

  • Generation of knowledge and attitudes towards nanotechnology from adolescents, adults and employees in small and medium enterprises (SMEs) working is the field

The educational aims of the project were the development of an individually adapted communication style with the adolescents, a digital collaborative learning system and the compilation of an education initiative about nanotechnology including teaching resources (Nanobox) and peer-teaching programs.

In order to achieve a high variety of perspectives, students from different types of Austrian higher schools (technical/scientific vs. economic vs. artistic) worked in close contact with scientists from academia. Due to the within Nan-O-Style acquired competences and the established network between academic scientists, students and educational institutions, the students developed new models for interdisciplinary teaching in mathematical/scientific/technical (MINT) subjects and applied them as best practice examples. We particularly focused on schools with an economic or fashion background which typically have a higher share of girls. A number of pre-scientific projects in nano-technological, nano-biological or nano-educational topics were carried out.

This approach towards interdisciplinary MINT education thus strengthened the profile formation of the Paris Lodron University of Salzburg and further extended to the education of teachers (coordination of earlier EU framework projects NanoTOES and NanoEIS by Prof. Duschl). Nan-O-Style was internationally well-connected as it further included educational partners in Israel and Spain.

This project has been completed.