Out of all the thirty essential studies recommended by CRN, study #29 -- "What policies toward administration of molecular manufacturing does all this suggest?" -- is by far the most comprehensive. This is in part because it deals with a very important central question, and also because there are so many variables. Intelligent answers will not be found without intensive analysis.
Because study #29 covers such a big topic, we're splitting our review of it over several days. Yesterday we began by considering "Scope and Degree of Control". Today we'll continue with "Approaches to Resources":
There are several fundamentally different approaches to dealing with resource allocation and other policy issues. We have covered these in detail in "Three Systems of Action: A Proposed Application for Effective Administration of Molecular Nanotechnology".
Subquestion A: Security: preserve the status quo against destructive change?
Preliminary answer: Prevent negative-sum transactions (e.g. theft). Deception and the use of force are acceptable. Commerce and information sharing are potential weaknesses. Loyalty, tradition, and honor are relevant values. Molecular manufacturing will raise many security issues.
Subquestion B: Commerce: optimize use of scarce resources; collect resources?
Preliminary answer: Maximize/optimize positive-sum transactions (e.g. free market trade). Use of force is not acceptable. Efficiency, innovation, and honesty are relevant values. Several resources will still be scarce even under nearly-free manufacturing, and much work will still benefit from commercial/monetary incentives.
Subquestion C: Information (non-rivalrous): maximize availability of non-scarce resources?
Preliminary answer: Optimize use of unlimited information (unlimited-sum transactions: the cost is very low and is unrelated to the value). Creativity and openness are relevant values. Reputation is a major motivator. This approach may be relevant for many blueprints and nano-produced objects.
Tomorrow we will look at "Worldviews and Values".
Our initial basic findings (preliminary answers and provisional conclusions) for all thirty studies should be verified as rapidly as possible. Because our understanding points to a crisis, a parallel process of conducting these studies is strongly preferred.
We are actively seeking researchers who have an interest in performing or assisting with this work. Please contact CRN Research Director Chris Phoenix if you would like more information or if you have comments on the proposed studies.