Deutscher Ethikrat

Welcome to the German Ethics Council

The German Ethics Council deals with the great questions of life. With its opinions and recommendations, it provides orientation for society and politics. The members are appointed by the President of the German Bundestag.

The German Ethics Council was constituted on April 11, 2008 on the basis of the Ethics Council Act and succeeded the National Ethics Council established by the Federal Government in 2001. In the first ten years the  German Ethics Council published 14 opinions on topics such as  anonymous relinquishment, intersexuality, preimplantation genetic diagnosis, genetic diagnostics, patient well beeing and Big Data. He has thus earned great recognition as an important and appreciated source of impetus for advising politicians and the general public.


Current Topics

Big Data

The amount of data circulating worldwide doubles each year. In the health care sector too, an increasing number of researchers, companies, and doctors are working with huge amounts of data – a trend that is subsumed under the umbrella term big data.

Interventions in the human germline

New molecular techniques collectively referred to as genome editing allow remarkably easy, fast, and precise changes in the genome and make interventions in the human germline in the near future seem technically feasible.

Benevolent coercion

At the moment, the German Ethics Council is working on an Opinion concerning the following questions: What forms of coercion can be identified? What role do coercive measures play in the mentioned practical fields? How is this ethically and legally problematic and where is a need for change in legislation and practical application?