Many see emerging technologies as a solution vector for the global challenges of the twenty-first century. Today's emerging technologies include: computational sciences; nanotechnology; micro-electro-mechanical systems (MEMS); bio-fuels; mobile technologies and a host of others. Yet an adequate understanding of their commercial, policy, environmental, ethical and societal implications lags far behind the development of their science and technology. The authors in this issue discuss the challenges presented by the commercial considerations of emerging technologies. If emerging technologies are critical to solving the largest problems facing the world, then better techniques are needed: for their management, to create policy and educate professionals to commercialize and govern them. This special issue presents the work of a number of researchers that helps to fill this gap. Some initial solutions such as radically improving current techniques and generating new ones are presented, and each author provides future research pathways.