The Council has a thorough, ongoing process for selecting new topics, which is overseen by a Future Work Subgroup.
Download a diagram showing topic selection flow.
The Council consults widely with a range of organisations and individuals including government, institutes and societies, industry, non-governmental bodies and researchers engaged in biological and biomedical research to identify a number of potential future work topics that the Council may wish to consider.
The Future Work Subgroup meets annually to draw up a shortlist of topics for the Council to investigate further. The shortlist of topics is presented and discussed in further depth at the Council’s annual 'Forward Look' meeting, with the help of invited speakers and guests. The Council then decides which topics are the most appropriate for further exploration.
Have your say
We are seeking your input and would like to hear from you about the issues that you think the Council should be investigating. Below you will find the link to download a summary of topics that have been suggested to the Council. If you would like to send in your feedback on the issues put forward here, or suggest other topics for consideration, please email Carol Perkins on firstname.lastname@example.org.
Please bear in mind the following questions when sending us your responses:
What topic(s) do you think the Council could make the most useful contribution to and why?
What type of output would you find most helpful for your preferred topic(s) – for example, in-depth report, fact sheet, public discussion event, policy focussed materials, guidelines, etc.
Download a summary of possible future work topics.
For a topic to be selected, it must fit the following conditions:
be novel: be linked to substantial new developments in medicine or biology
raise ethical questions and concerns of some complexity
be timely: the Council aims to be proactive in its selection of new topics
lead to a report that would be likely to have an important impact on policy or practice
be within the Council’s terms of reference
What happens once a topic has been chosen?
Typically, once the Council has selected a potential topic for consideration, it holds an in-depth workshop to help members decide whether the issue merits further examination. If so, the Council will normally establish a Working Party to examine and report on the ethical, social, legal or practical issues, though other types of activity and output can also be considered.