Bioethics

Translating universal ethical principles into policy and action

Ethical challenges related to scientific and technological progresses

In the relentless struggle to secure prosperous and sustainable future for all, science is our ally. We turn to science to solve some of humanities biggest challenges – whether it is to find a way to feed the escalating global population projected to reach 9.6 billion in 2050, to mitigate climate change, or to find cures to deadly diseases and prevent future epidemics.

Science and technology are transforming our lives at an increasing pace. Artificial intelligence creating its own language, human organs being repaired with the use of stem cells, artificial limbs moving by the power of thought, vaccine showing success against the deadly Ebola virus – these are just a few of the recent headlines. And yet, billions of people remain beyond the reach of the benefits of these and other critical advancements, as exemplified by the death of  16,000 children each day before their fifth birthday of pneumonia, malaria, diarrhea and other preventable diseases.

Economic growth continues to fuel environmental destruction and depletion of finite resources, despite the scientific knowledge on the detrimental impact on our lives and on the future generations.

As the rapidly expanding scientific knowledge continues to push the limits of what we can do, it becomes increasingly important for us – the citizens, the government, the international community – to decide what we should do to avoid the misuse of scientific progress and to harness its power for protecting life on earth and achieving sustainable development for all.

This is the aim of UNESCO’s Bioethics Programme – leading the global efforts to foster consensus on universal ethical principles and assist Member States in translating these principles into action through ethics education and policy-making.

Pursuing solutions: translating universal principles into policy and action

For more information of this topic, please check this link or directly contact the SHS Unit at UNESCO Jakarta Office (i.khodeli(at)unesco.org).

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