Interactive survey of consumer awareness of nanotechnologies and nanoparticles in consumer products in South Korea

Yu Ri Kim, Eun Jeong Lee, Sung Ha Park, Hyo Jin Kwon, Seong Soo A. An, Sang Wook Son, Young Rok Seo, Jae Eun Pie, Myoung Yoon, Ja Hei Kim, Meyoung Kon Kim

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Citations (Scopus)


Background: The purpose of our study was to understand consumers’ risk awareness and need for relevant information about nanotechnology and nanoparticles contained in products currently being sold in Korea. Methods: One thousand and seven adult consumers (aged 20–50 years) were randomly selected from all over South Korea between November 1 and 9, 2010. We surveyed the origin and degree of their concern and their need for information and education regarding nanomaterials. Results: Analysis of the survey results showed no significant differences in responses by sex, age, and level of education, but significant differences were found in responses based on average monthly household income. Our research showed that consumers have vague expectations for and positive image of nanotechnology and nanoproducts but do not clearly understand what they are. In addition, we found that preparing and disseminating information to consumers is required in order to provide correct information about nanotechnology to the public. Conclusion: A communication system should be established among the multiple stakeholders involved with nanomaterials to address consumer expectations and concerns. Further, a safety evaluation system must be set up, the results of which should be processed by a reliable expert group so they can be disseminated to the public.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)11-20
Number of pages10
JournalInternational Journal of Nanomedicine
Publication statusPublished - 2014 Dec 15


  • Consumer characteristics
  • Household income
  • Nanomaterials
  • Questionnaire survey

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biophysics
  • Bioengineering
  • Biomaterials
  • Pharmaceutical Science
  • Drug Discovery
  • Organic Chemistry


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