Global Health, Global Ethics, Global Justice

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Conference Report, March 2018

From 16th to 18th March 2016, representatives from 79 national ethics councils, national bioethics committees and members of international organizations working in the field of life sciences gathered in Berlin for the 11th Global Summit of National Ethics/Bioethics Committees. The organization of the Summit was supported by a steering committee composed of representatives from national ethics councils from the six WHO regions and international experts.

The theme for the Global Summit 2016 in Berlin was "Global Health, Global Ethics, Global Justice" in order to illustrate the interconnected nature of public health decisions with ethical considerations and questions of justice at a world scale. The programme consequently covered various topics of global relevance including emerging and new technologies, epidemics and outbreaks, bioethical policies and bioethical law as well as raising social awareness of bioethical issues. This conference report serves as a summary of the discussion at the Global Summit 2016. It includes the contributions and presentations of the speakers as well as the discussion papers and the abstracts of the marketplace presentations.

The Global Summit of National Ethics/Bioethics Committees is an international conference that was established in 1996 when the first summit took place in San Francisco. The Summit is held every two years and hosted on a rotating basis in different countries to reflect the six regions as established by the World Health Organization. The Global Summit is the most important international meeting of national ethics/bioethics committees for dialogue and exchange on bioethical questions as well as on issues in the life sciences. The objectives of the Summit are to identify ethical issues of global concern, to provide a forum for exchange and to offer opportunities to discuss public health policies and research activities at international and regional levels.