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Walter P. Kistler Book Award


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First Walter P. Kistler Book Award Won by Gregory Stock

The first recipient of the Walter P. Kistler Book Award was Dr. Gregory Stock, Director of the Program on Medicine, Technology, and Society at the School of Public Health, University of California at Los Angeles, for his book Redesigning Humans: Our Inevitable Genetic Future (Houghton Mifflin, 2002; paperback, Redesigning Humans: Choosing Our Genes, Changing Our Future, April 2003). Dr. Stock is an expert in the implications of scientific advances in reproductive biology. His book explicates the enhancement technologies that may soon enable parents to exercise significant selection in their children’s appearance, capabilities, and disease resistance.

Dr. Stock received the award on April 10, 2020, at Town Hall in Seattle. Following the award ceremony, he spoke to the large audience on the overall concept of redesigning humans, including specific themes from the book such as cloning, somatic interventions, and direct human germline manipulations.

The Walter P. Kistler Book Award is given annually to authors of science-based books that significantly increase the knowledge and understanding of the public regarding subjects that will shape the future of our species. It includes a cash prize of US$10,000 and a certificate, and is presented personally by the originator of the award program, Walter Kistler, benefactor of the Foundation.


“To forgo the powerful technologies that genomics and molecular biology are bringing would be as out of character for humanity as it would be to use them without concern for the dangers they pose. We will do neither. The question is no longer whether we will manipulate embryos, but when, where, and how.”

—Dr. Gregory Stock, Redesigning Humans