Edelman to help improve image of nanotechnology

Chicago: The NanoBusiness Development Group, a consulting firm affiliated with a nonprofit industry trade group, has hired Edelman to increase awareness and improve the image of nanotechnology.

Chicago: The NanoBusiness Development Group, a consulting firm affiliated with a nonprofit industry trade group, has hired Edelman to increase awareness and improve the image of nanotechnology.

Randy Pitzer, SVP of Edelman's tech group, will oversee the account from Chicago. Pitzer said he expects the assignment to generate other business for Edelman as it develops expertise in nanotechnology and approaches member companies of the trade group for other assignments.

The NanoBusiness Development Group is a for-profit arm of the NanoBusiness Alliance, a New York-based trade group founded in 2001 for companies working in the nanotechnology area, said Nathan Tinker, president of the consulting group.

Edelman contacted the group for the assignment. "We felt their background was a useful stepping stone for nanotechnology. They had the chops in place to keep expanding the gospel of nanotechnology," Tinker said.

Hollywood films and science fiction in general have created myths about the dangers of nanotechnology that the association needs to dispel, Tinker said. "There's a knee-jerk reaction to be skeptical and perhaps even fearful," he said, adding that Edelman can help consumers understand that nanotechnology is already at work in such everyday devices as cars.

The problems that technology in general has had in the current recession have also hurt nanotechnology's image, Tinker said. "There's a mass skepticism about anything with the word 'technology' connected to it."

Spending on the account has yet to be determined.

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