The previous post reviewed some of our highlights of 2012, and in this post we turn our attention to what lies ahead in 2013.
In February we are set to launch a new teaching resource based on the Council’s report Human bodies: donation for medicine and research. This set of materials contains case studies, activity sheets and background information to help teachers carry out structured ethical debates in the classroom.
This will be the sixth in a series of free teaching resources produced by the Council.
Box Office Bioethics, our film competition for students, closes at the end of February, and judging will take place in March. We look forward to announcing the winners at the annual public lecture later in the year. We are delighted to have a great group of people on the judging panel.
We will also be starting our new project on biodata, examining the ethical issues arising in relation to genomics, health records, database linkage and privacy. This Working Party will be chaired by Professor Martin Richards from the Centre for Family Research in Cambridge. You can sign up for updates on this work as the project progresses.
Meanwhile, in the arts world, the Council is an advisory partner for Y-touring Theatre Company on their new play for secondary pupils, ‘Stunted trees, broken bridges’. The play, touring schools in the early part of the year, looks at questions of identity, personality and responsibility through an exploration of issues arising from the development and impact of novel neurotechnologies.
Our major report on information disclosure in donor conception will be published later this spring – keep an eye on our website for further updates about the launch.
Our annual public lecture will take place on the evening of 7 May. We have a really excellent guest speaker – to be announced very soon. This lecture takes place between the two days of the Council’s Forward Look meeting where possible future topics will be considered. The topics under consideration this time will be research integrity; aesthetic surgery; extending life; and cross-border care. We are currently looking for people to write background papers on each of these topics.
Another new project for 2013 will be our inquiry on children and research. This Working Party will explore the ethical issues raised by the involvement of children and young people in clinical research. If you are interested in helping us with this work or would like to be kept informed of progress please see the current call for expressions of interest for more information.
In the summer we will finally be launching our report on novel neurotechnologies that intervene in the brain. Details of the launch date and the public seminar that will accompany the launch will be published on our website nearer the time.
In the latter part of the year with the projects on biodata and children and research well underway, we will also be organising exploratory workshops to further examine one or two of the topics selected at the Forward Look meeting, before Council decides whether or how to take them forward.