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Mittuniversitetet
Radiofrequency Radiation and
Children’s Health
– Sustainability Challenges
for E-Government
PhD Mikko Ahonen, Mid Sweden University, Sundsvall
Researcher Tarmo Koppel, Tallinn Technical University
SWEG 2017 – The 14th Scandinavian Workshop on E-Government
Background:
- Work in the world’s biggest mobile learning research project
(EU IST MOBIlearn 2002-2005) + work with schools.
- Risk-management research 2008-2016, together with professor,
MD Lennart Hardell, Örebro University Hospital, Sweden.
Carlberg, M., Hedendahl, L., Ahonen, M.,
Koppel, T., & Hardell, L. (2016). Increasing
incidence of thyroid cancer in the Nordic
countries with main focus on Swedish
data. BMC Cancer, 16, 426.
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/27388603
Hardell, L., Koppel, T., Carlberg, M.,
Ahonen, M., & Hedendahl, L. (2016).
Radiofrequency radiation at Stockholm
Central Railway Station in Sweden and
some medical aspects on public
exposure to RF fields. International
Journal of Oncology, 49(4), 1315–1324.
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/27633090
Some latest work:
- Definition of risks and sustainability
- Special risks of children and RF radiation in schools
- About RF-guidelines dilemma in E-Government projects
- Organisational learning theory and methodology
- Questionnaire to schools
- Further work
Topics
In E-government studies risks have earlier studied
mostly from adoption perspective (Belanger & Carter,
2008; Horst, Kuttschreuter & Gutteling, 2006).
In other words, the interest has been on e-services
adoption and risk-focus has been on factors
(usability, trust etc.) that prevent or slow down new
technologies adoption.
Risk-definition
within E-Government studies
What if technology behind all
new E-Government projects is
unhealthy and ecologically
unsustainable?
How do you define risks in that
case?
• The WHO/International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) has
classified in 2011 radiofrequency (RF) electromagnetic fields as
possibly carcinogenic to humans (Group 2B), based on an
increased risk for glioma, a malignant type of brain cancer,
associated with wireless phone use.
http://www.iarc.fr/en/media-centre/pr/2011/pdfs/pr208_E.pdf
 Focus on all wireless transmitters which produce RF radiation
(radars, mobile phone base stations, DECT-phones/base stations,
Wi-Fi routers, tablets etc).
•  Focus on cumulative, chronic (24/7) exposure from all RF-
sources.
Why current health discussion?
Mittuniversitetet
Microwave (RF radiation)
absorption to head – child vs. adult
Gandhi et al. (1996) , Wiart et al. (2008), de Salles et al. (2008)
“The results show that the locally induced fields in children can be significantly
higher in subregions of the brain (cortex, hippocampus and hypothalamus) and the
eye due to the closer proximity of the phone to these tissues.
The increase is even larger for bone marrow (>10 dB) as a result of
its significantly high conductivity.” Christ et al. (2010); see also Peyman&Gabriel (2010).
Own comment: Now devices used against stomach, soft tissues, high absorption.
Mittuniversitetet
Dilemma: RF Radiation Guidelines
New technology is seen safe and ready to be implemented
even in schools by people who design E-Government
projects.
What if these guidelines are based on outdated science and
dogmatic views ?
Raytheon
Military radars and microwave ovens
- same guidelines in the USA
Even nowadays RF-radiation guidelines are based on acute thermal effects. Only.
Image source:Wikipedia
Classics – a book & a thesis
http://ro.uow.edu.au/theses/3148/
http://www.amazon.com/The-Microwave-Debate-Nicholas-Steneck/dp/0262691175
Mittuniversitetet
Thermal-based acute (6 minutes) ICNIRP-guideline
vs.
Biological, non-thermal 24/7 guidelines/recommendations
0
1000000
2000000
3000000
4000000
5000000
6000000
7000000
8000000
9000000
10000000
ICNIRP Russia Council of
Europe
EUROPAEM
10000000
100000 100 10
uW/m2
Please, note: ICNIRP-level is 100-1.000.000 times higher! http://www.icnirp.de
EMF Scientist Appeal. 200 researchers contact in 2015 the UN and require lower levels:
http://www.emfscientist.org
Comparison of guidelines: http://tinyurl.com/RF-Guideline
RF Radiation
power density
levels
Mittuniversitetet
From reviewer’s comments:
• ” Since RF radiation is a somewhat controversial topic and not yet
fully explored (e.g.
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24162060), we suggest you
focus the scientific rigor on how these issues can be understood
and handled in the e-Government context. “
• Anonymous reviewer’s reference & ”State of Art –paper (?)”:
Foster, K. R., & Moulder, J. E. (2013). Wi-Fi and health: review of
current status of research. Health Physics, 105(6), 561–575.
•  Financed by the Wi-Fi Alliance
 Their other papers financed by Mobile Manufacturers Forum
 Moulder has been an expert witness for power and RF industry
for 30 years.
 Come on, let’s focus on science, not ’doubt is their product’-
papers!
Mittuniversitetet
Report of the RNCNIRP (Russian National Committee of
Non-Ionizing Radiation) to the WHO, in 2008:
http://www.who.int/peh-emf/project/mapnatreps/RUSSIA%20report%202008.pdf
Stricter view on RF-Guidelines
Mittuniversitetet
Paradigm change –study?
Early results from world’s biggest and best-made NTP
animal study show tumor risks below ICNIRP-guideline level.
In 2016 a U.S. National Toxicology
Program (NTP) study found wireless
radiation caused DNA damage, and
brain and heart tumours in rodents
at the non-thermal level (NTP, 2016).,
lower than the current ICNIRP
guideline for mobile phones.
 Both the American Cancer Society and the IEEE comment that
RF-guidelines need to be re-evaluated.
https://ntp.niehs.nih.gov/results/areas/cellphones/
http://microwavenews.com/news-center/ntp-comet-assay
Image source: the IEEE
Mittuniversitetet
Tissue temperature increase or
ionization is not needed for harmful
effects?!
Results from Yakymenko et al. (2015) review on RF and
oxidative stress:
Yakymenko, I., Tsybulin, O., Sidorik, E., Henshel, D., Kyrylenko, O., Kyrylenko,
S., 2015. Oxidative mechanisms of biological activity of low-intensity
radiofrequency radiation. Electromagn Biol Med 1–16.
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/26151230
See also Rüdiger (2009) review of genotoxic effects:
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19285841
Mittuniversitetet
Epidemiological studies
Radio and TV-transmitters:
Effect: Dolk et al. (1997a), Hocking & Gordon (2003),
Ha et al. (2007), Mascarinec et al. (1994, Michelozzi et al.
(2002), Morton & Phillips (1983), Park et al. (2004)
[Mostly increased leukemias and lymphomas]
No effect: Dolk et al. (1997b), Mersenich et al. (2008)
Mobile Phone Base Stations:
Effect: Abdel-Rassoul et al. (2007),
Eger et al. (2004), Hutter et al. (2006),
Navarro et al. (2003), Santini et al. (2003),
Wolf & Wolf (2004), Blettner et al. (2008), Dode et al. (2011),
Shahbazi-Gahrouei (2013) [great variety: from headaches to breast
cancer]
No effect: Meyer et al. (2006), Berg-Beckhoff et al. (2009)
Our review: Khurana et al. (2010)
+ own interest: http://www.chronicexposure.org
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20662418
Mittuniversitetet
Effect on bees, birds and plants
- Radiofrequency radiation (RF)
Already 3 reviews indicate harmful effects:
Cucurachi et al. (2013).
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23261519
Balmori (2009):
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19264463
Sivani & Sudarsanam (2012).
http://www.biolmedonline.com/Articles/Vol4_4_2012/Vo
l4_4_202-216_BM-8.pdf
+ http://www.indiaenvironmentportal.org.in/files/file/final_mobile_towers_report.pdf
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23915130
Mittuniversitetet
Theoretical background behind problem-solving:
Organisational learning
Concepts of organisational learning and learning organisation are rooted
into many perspectives of management, and its practices recognise a wide
range of factors, such as organisation strategy, culture, structure,
absorptive capacity, problem‐solving ability, employee participation,
etc. determining the learning results (Wang and Ahmed, 2003).
All these factors should be included in the questionnaire.
Would include a long-term problem-solving exercise, even workshops
& Delphi-panels with schools.
Mittuniversitetet
Interpretation
(Data given
meaning)
Scanning
(Data collection)
Learning
(Action taking)
(Feedback loop)
Picture 1. Basic organisational learning theory –framework,
loosely based on Argyris & Schön (1996).
Mittuniversitetet
Interpretation
Need to change
both attitudes
and working
methods of
personnel.
Reconsidering
IT systems.
Adding distance
to RF sources
and minimising
exposure time.
Scanning
- Current risky
usage culture in
schools.
-Best RF Risk-
management
practices in
various
countries
- Alternative
technologies
(cable, off-line
use)
Learning
Re-building IT
systems to
schools with
mainly cabled
infrastructure and
limited Wi-Fi
/wireless zones.
Adding off-line
support to
software. Learning
new usage
practices.
(Feedback loop)
Picture 2. Adapted organisational learning framework,
with risk-management steps included.
Mittuniversitetet
Further work
- Questionnaire and statistical
analysis development
- Contacting schools in
Sweden, Finland and Estonia
- Understanding organisational
learning from schools’
perspective
PhD Mikko Ahonen, mikko . ahonen [ät] miun . se
PhD candidate Tarmo Koppel, tarmo [ät] koppel . ee
Questions and comments welcome!

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Radiofrequency Radiation and Children’s Health – Sustainability Challenges for E- Government

  • 1. Mittuniversitetet Radiofrequency Radiation and Children’s Health – Sustainability Challenges for E-Government PhD Mikko Ahonen, Mid Sweden University, Sundsvall Researcher Tarmo Koppel, Tallinn Technical University SWEG 2017 – The 14th Scandinavian Workshop on E-Government
  • 2. Background: - Work in the world’s biggest mobile learning research project (EU IST MOBIlearn 2002-2005) + work with schools. - Risk-management research 2008-2016, together with professor, MD Lennart Hardell, Örebro University Hospital, Sweden. Carlberg, M., Hedendahl, L., Ahonen, M., Koppel, T., & Hardell, L. (2016). Increasing incidence of thyroid cancer in the Nordic countries with main focus on Swedish data. BMC Cancer, 16, 426. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/27388603 Hardell, L., Koppel, T., Carlberg, M., Ahonen, M., & Hedendahl, L. (2016). Radiofrequency radiation at Stockholm Central Railway Station in Sweden and some medical aspects on public exposure to RF fields. International Journal of Oncology, 49(4), 1315–1324. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/27633090 Some latest work:
  • 3. - Definition of risks and sustainability - Special risks of children and RF radiation in schools - About RF-guidelines dilemma in E-Government projects - Organisational learning theory and methodology - Questionnaire to schools - Further work Topics
  • 4. In E-government studies risks have earlier studied mostly from adoption perspective (Belanger & Carter, 2008; Horst, Kuttschreuter & Gutteling, 2006). In other words, the interest has been on e-services adoption and risk-focus has been on factors (usability, trust etc.) that prevent or slow down new technologies adoption. Risk-definition within E-Government studies
  • 5. What if technology behind all new E-Government projects is unhealthy and ecologically unsustainable? How do you define risks in that case?
  • 6. • The WHO/International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) has classified in 2011 radiofrequency (RF) electromagnetic fields as possibly carcinogenic to humans (Group 2B), based on an increased risk for glioma, a malignant type of brain cancer, associated with wireless phone use. http://www.iarc.fr/en/media-centre/pr/2011/pdfs/pr208_E.pdf  Focus on all wireless transmitters which produce RF radiation (radars, mobile phone base stations, DECT-phones/base stations, Wi-Fi routers, tablets etc). •  Focus on cumulative, chronic (24/7) exposure from all RF- sources. Why current health discussion?
  • 7. Mittuniversitetet Microwave (RF radiation) absorption to head – child vs. adult Gandhi et al. (1996) , Wiart et al. (2008), de Salles et al. (2008) “The results show that the locally induced fields in children can be significantly higher in subregions of the brain (cortex, hippocampus and hypothalamus) and the eye due to the closer proximity of the phone to these tissues. The increase is even larger for bone marrow (>10 dB) as a result of its significantly high conductivity.” Christ et al. (2010); see also Peyman&Gabriel (2010). Own comment: Now devices used against stomach, soft tissues, high absorption.
  • 8. Mittuniversitetet Dilemma: RF Radiation Guidelines New technology is seen safe and ready to be implemented even in schools by people who design E-Government projects. What if these guidelines are based on outdated science and dogmatic views ?
  • 9. Raytheon Military radars and microwave ovens - same guidelines in the USA Even nowadays RF-radiation guidelines are based on acute thermal effects. Only. Image source:Wikipedia
  • 10. Classics – a book & a thesis http://ro.uow.edu.au/theses/3148/ http://www.amazon.com/The-Microwave-Debate-Nicholas-Steneck/dp/0262691175
  • 11. Mittuniversitetet Thermal-based acute (6 minutes) ICNIRP-guideline vs. Biological, non-thermal 24/7 guidelines/recommendations 0 1000000 2000000 3000000 4000000 5000000 6000000 7000000 8000000 9000000 10000000 ICNIRP Russia Council of Europe EUROPAEM 10000000 100000 100 10 uW/m2 Please, note: ICNIRP-level is 100-1.000.000 times higher! http://www.icnirp.de EMF Scientist Appeal. 200 researchers contact in 2015 the UN and require lower levels: http://www.emfscientist.org Comparison of guidelines: http://tinyurl.com/RF-Guideline RF Radiation power density levels
  • 12. Mittuniversitetet From reviewer’s comments: • ” Since RF radiation is a somewhat controversial topic and not yet fully explored (e.g. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24162060), we suggest you focus the scientific rigor on how these issues can be understood and handled in the e-Government context. “ • Anonymous reviewer’s reference & ”State of Art –paper (?)”: Foster, K. R., & Moulder, J. E. (2013). Wi-Fi and health: review of current status of research. Health Physics, 105(6), 561–575. •  Financed by the Wi-Fi Alliance  Their other papers financed by Mobile Manufacturers Forum  Moulder has been an expert witness for power and RF industry for 30 years.  Come on, let’s focus on science, not ’doubt is their product’- papers!
  • 13. Mittuniversitetet Report of the RNCNIRP (Russian National Committee of Non-Ionizing Radiation) to the WHO, in 2008: http://www.who.int/peh-emf/project/mapnatreps/RUSSIA%20report%202008.pdf Stricter view on RF-Guidelines
  • 14. Mittuniversitetet Paradigm change –study? Early results from world’s biggest and best-made NTP animal study show tumor risks below ICNIRP-guideline level. In 2016 a U.S. National Toxicology Program (NTP) study found wireless radiation caused DNA damage, and brain and heart tumours in rodents at the non-thermal level (NTP, 2016)., lower than the current ICNIRP guideline for mobile phones.  Both the American Cancer Society and the IEEE comment that RF-guidelines need to be re-evaluated. https://ntp.niehs.nih.gov/results/areas/cellphones/ http://microwavenews.com/news-center/ntp-comet-assay Image source: the IEEE
  • 15. Mittuniversitetet Tissue temperature increase or ionization is not needed for harmful effects?! Results from Yakymenko et al. (2015) review on RF and oxidative stress: Yakymenko, I., Tsybulin, O., Sidorik, E., Henshel, D., Kyrylenko, O., Kyrylenko, S., 2015. Oxidative mechanisms of biological activity of low-intensity radiofrequency radiation. Electromagn Biol Med 1–16. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/26151230 See also Rüdiger (2009) review of genotoxic effects: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19285841
  • 16. Mittuniversitetet Epidemiological studies Radio and TV-transmitters: Effect: Dolk et al. (1997a), Hocking & Gordon (2003), Ha et al. (2007), Mascarinec et al. (1994, Michelozzi et al. (2002), Morton & Phillips (1983), Park et al. (2004) [Mostly increased leukemias and lymphomas] No effect: Dolk et al. (1997b), Mersenich et al. (2008) Mobile Phone Base Stations: Effect: Abdel-Rassoul et al. (2007), Eger et al. (2004), Hutter et al. (2006), Navarro et al. (2003), Santini et al. (2003), Wolf & Wolf (2004), Blettner et al. (2008), Dode et al. (2011), Shahbazi-Gahrouei (2013) [great variety: from headaches to breast cancer] No effect: Meyer et al. (2006), Berg-Beckhoff et al. (2009) Our review: Khurana et al. (2010) + own interest: http://www.chronicexposure.org http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20662418
  • 17. Mittuniversitetet Effect on bees, birds and plants - Radiofrequency radiation (RF) Already 3 reviews indicate harmful effects: Cucurachi et al. (2013). http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23261519 Balmori (2009): http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19264463 Sivani & Sudarsanam (2012). http://www.biolmedonline.com/Articles/Vol4_4_2012/Vo l4_4_202-216_BM-8.pdf + http://www.indiaenvironmentportal.org.in/files/file/final_mobile_towers_report.pdf http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23915130
  • 18. Mittuniversitetet Theoretical background behind problem-solving: Organisational learning Concepts of organisational learning and learning organisation are rooted into many perspectives of management, and its practices recognise a wide range of factors, such as organisation strategy, culture, structure, absorptive capacity, problem‐solving ability, employee participation, etc. determining the learning results (Wang and Ahmed, 2003). All these factors should be included in the questionnaire. Would include a long-term problem-solving exercise, even workshops & Delphi-panels with schools.
  • 19. Mittuniversitetet Interpretation (Data given meaning) Scanning (Data collection) Learning (Action taking) (Feedback loop) Picture 1. Basic organisational learning theory –framework, loosely based on Argyris & Schön (1996).
  • 20. Mittuniversitetet Interpretation Need to change both attitudes and working methods of personnel. Reconsidering IT systems. Adding distance to RF sources and minimising exposure time. Scanning - Current risky usage culture in schools. -Best RF Risk- management practices in various countries - Alternative technologies (cable, off-line use) Learning Re-building IT systems to schools with mainly cabled infrastructure and limited Wi-Fi /wireless zones. Adding off-line support to software. Learning new usage practices. (Feedback loop) Picture 2. Adapted organisational learning framework, with risk-management steps included.
  • 21. Mittuniversitetet Further work - Questionnaire and statistical analysis development - Contacting schools in Sweden, Finland and Estonia - Understanding organisational learning from schools’ perspective
  • 22. PhD Mikko Ahonen, mikko . ahonen [ät] miun . se PhD candidate Tarmo Koppel, tarmo [ät] koppel . ee Questions and comments welcome!