9th (Ordinary) Session of the World Commission on the Ethics of Scientific Knowledge and Technology (COMEST)

and 22nd (Ordinary) Session of the International Bioethics Committee (IBC)

UNESCO Paris, France, 29 September - 1 October 2015

The 9th Session of COMEST and 22nd Session of the IBC were held jointly for the first time from 28 September to 2 October 2015 at UNESCO Headquarters. During these sessions, both advisory bodies had the opportunity to meet in private and in public to discuss their respective draft reports, as well as possible collaboration in their future work programmes. Furthermore, the 2015 Avicenna Prize Lecture was also held within the framework of these sessions.

This innovative approach of bringing together the events on bioethics and ethics of science is a result of improvements to the working methods of the statutory bodies in ethics (including the IGBC), and is aimed at raising visibility, strengthening synergies, and multiplying the impacts of UNESCO’s action in this field.

The sessions attracted approximately 167 participants (of which 108 were observers at the public meetings) from 75 countries. The Avicenna Prize Lecture attracted more than 200 participants. During these sessions, in addition to the work topics of COMEST and the IBC, the UNESCO Assistant Director-General for Natural Sciences, the Executive Secretary of the Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission and the Director for Research of the International Labour Organization (ILO) also presented on emerging ethical issues for science and society. Their input contributed to the committees’ reflection on their work programmes for 2016-2017.


Preliminary Work Programmes of COMEST and the IBC for 2016-2017

During these sessions, COMEST and the IBC also decided upon their respective work programmes for 2016-2017. Both advisory bodies have also indicated that they would remain open to collaborate on and contribute to each other’s work topics next biennium, and have already identified possible avenues for this collaboration in the reports for next biennium.

Bureaus of COMEST and IBC for 2016-2017

COMEST and the IBC also elected their respective Bureaus for 2016-2017 during these sessions.

The Final Report of the Session will be made available online soon.


Information Documents

Meeting Documents

Related Links


COMEST-IBC Secretariat
Bioethics and Ethics of Science Section
Division of Ethics, Youth and Sport
Social and Human Sciences Sector
Tel.: + 33 (0)1 45 68 38 57 / 39 45
Fax: + 33 (0)1 45 68 55 52
E-mail: ibc(at)unesco.org / comest2014(at)unesco.org

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