8th International Bioethics, Multiculturalism and Religion Workshop – Bangkok, Thailand 8-10 November 2021

8th International Bioethics, Multiculturalism and Religion Workshop – Bangkok, Thailand 8-10 November 2021

Religious Perspectives on Bioethics: Protecting the environment, the biosphere and biodiversity


Experts from religious (Buddhist, Christian, Confucian, Hindu, Islamic, Jewish) and secular traditions will analyze and discuss “Religious Perspectives on Bioethics: Protecting the environment, the biosphere and biodiversity” from an Interreligious and Multicultural Perspective during a three-day UNESCO Chair workshop.

The workshop will address the bioethical challenge of protecting future generations in the light of article 17 of the UNESCO Declaration on Bioethics and Human Rights: “Due regard is to be given to the interconnection between human beings and other forms of life, to the importance of appropriate access and utilization of biological and genetic resources, to respect for traditional knowledge and to the role of human beings in the protection of the environment, the biosphere and biodiversity”.

The general theme for this workshop was suggested by the experts participating in our previous workshop (Houston 2016). To find convergence and cooperation in the field of these crucial issues related to the protection of the environment will be the core subject matter of the papers and workshop discussions and lectures. The collection of these papers will result in the publication of a book.

The 2021 Thailand workshop and symposium under the auspices of the UNESCO Chair in Bioethics and Human Rights serves as one of the world’s foremost multicultural and interreligious academic bioethics conference.

We have chosen Thailand for this workshop because of its prestigious higher education institutions and the Buddhist cultural sensitivity to this topic. The topics discussed will capture the attention and interest of health professionals, university scholars, the scientific community, researchers, media, policymakers, environmentalists and the general public.

The workshop is held by the UNESCO Chair in Bioethics and Human Rights and co-organized with the Center for Science, Technology, and Society, Chulalongkorn University, Bangkok, Thailand. Sponsors include the Ministry of Education, Thailand and the University of Chicago Medicine Program on Medicine and Religion.

The tentatively scheduled dates of the event are November 8-10, 2021.  However, due to the unforeseeable circumstances of the Covid-19 pandemic and the local protests in Thailand, the event dates will be finalized in mid-September, 2021.  An alternative date (if the event is postponed) is set for Jan 31-February 2, 2022.

PARTICIPATION

The workshop will be held in Chulalongkorn University, Bangkok, Thailand.

For those who would like to join us in this event, please contact us at info@unescobiochair.org for logistical details regarding hotel, meals, transport, etc. Expenses are not covered by our organization.

We are looking into possible cultural visits with a travel agency around the dates of the workshop.

Día Mundial de la Bioética

Día Mundial de la Bioética

El 19 de octubre pasado, junto con la Facultad de Bioética de la Universidad Anáhuac, organizamos un seminario titulado “Día Mundial de la Bioética”. En esta ocasión el Director de la Cátedra, Prof. Alberto García comenzó el seminario con un mensaje sobre “La proyección de la Bioética en el futuro a nivel mundial.”

Sigue leyendo la noticia en Anahuac.mx/EscuelasyFacultades/Bioetica

Además, fue publicada la “Declaración sobre Bioética y Salud Mental derivada de la celebración del Día Mundial de la Bioética.”

Preámbulo

La salud, según la Organización Mundial de la Salud, es un “estado de completo bienestar físico, mental y social, y no solamente la ausencia de afecciones o enfermedades”. Sin embargo, es un hecho que la disminución en la salud mental se manifiesta con la presencia de afecciones psicosociales y trastornos mentales, que actualmente aquejan a más de mil millones de personas. La pandemia por COVID-19 ha alterado la rutina habitual de los individuos, les ha enfrentado a situaciones críticas y les ha llevado a desarrollar, en muchos casos, depresión, ansiedad, consumo de sustancias y trastornos relacionados con trauma y estrés. En la pospandemia, enfrentaremos problemáticas de diversa índole, tales como las médicas, psicológicas, sociales y económicas; observaremos muy probablemente un incremento en los trastornos mentales, en las adicciones al alcohol, a las drogas, la presencia de ludopatías, altos índices de violencia doméstica como consecuencia del largo período de confinamiento y un aumento considerable de la conducta suicida, por lo que el bienestar, la integridad y la vida de las personas está en riesgo. Es por tanto, imperante desarrollar una visión empática y solidaria que permita, desde los principios de la bioética tales como la sociabilidad, la subsidiariedad y la justicia distributiva, involucrar a todos los miembros de la sociedad para implementar estrategias orientadas al bien común, a la disminución de las condiciones que otorgan vulnerabilidad social y a la garantía del acceso a los servicios de salud mental por parte de la población. La Bioética juega, pues, un papel fundamental en el abordaje de este problema urgente que nos inquieta en los albores de la vida postpandemia y debe, por ello, fortalecerse, ahora más que nunca, como una Bioética en salida, capaz de ir a las fronteras y límites humanos para rescatar y salvaguardar la dignidad de todas las personas buscando con ello el beneficio de toda la sociedad con una visiòn fortalecida dirigida hacia el bien común. Creemos, por todo lo anterior, que es preciso rescatar los principios de la Bioética para poder enfrentar, con decisión y arrojo, esta otra pandemia de afectaciones a la salud mental de las personas.

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Aquí el facebook live del seminario

Integrazione sociale ed educazione civica in un’Europa pluralista – CivicAL

Integrazione sociale ed educazione civica in un’Europa pluralista – CivicAL

Il 29 settembre dalle 09:30 alle 12:30, la nostra UNESCO Chair in Bioethics and Human Rights, stabilita nell’Ateneo Pontificio Regina Apostolorum e nell’Università Europea di Roma, ha organizzato una giornata di studio sull’integrazione sociale ed educazione civica all’interno del progetto europeo CivicAL (Civic Dimensions for Social Inclusion) cofinanziato dal programma Erasmus +. La prima parte è stata dedicata al dibattito tra esperti di migrazioni ed educazione civica con testimonianze dirette. La seconde, invece, alla presentazione degli Intellectual Outputs del progetto: Il “Manuale per i formatori” e il videogioco the CIVIC HUNTING. Il seminario è stato trasmesso su piattaforma ZOOM con traduzione simultanea in inglese e in italiano. 

Leggi il Programma

Dopo i saluti iniziali del Prof. Alberto Garcia, Direttore della Cattedra, sono intervenuti i relatori che hanno preso parte al seminario, P. Antonio Lemos, LC, dell’Ateneo Pontificio Regina Apostolorum e P. Aldo Skoda, Scalabriniano del Scalabrini International Migration Institute P. Lemos, LC ha esposto una visione sui flussi migratori partendo dalle Sacre Scritture, il ruolo della Chiesa attraverso il Global Compact e secondo la Dottrina della Chiesa. Subito dopo P. Aldo Skoda, ha introdotto il concetto della mobilità umana come un fenomeno in continuo cambiamento caratterizzato dalla comunicazione scorretta attraverso i media che lo ritrae come come fenomeno di “distrazione di massa,” così alimentando tutti quei pregiudizi intorno alle migrazioni togliendo dignità a quelle persone costrette a lasciare il proprio paese.

Il Seminario, moderato dal Dott. Giovanni Intra Sidola, Formazione Integrale dell’Università Europea di Roma, ha proseguito con la presentazione degli Intellectual Outputs: Il Manuale dei Formatori, da parte della Dott.ssa Lilian Santons, coordinatrice del progetto CivicAL del team unescobiochair, e il video gioco the Civic Hunting presentato dalla Dott.ssa Serena Montefusco responsabile di comunicazione dello stesso team.

Il Seminario si è concluso con due interessanti testimonianze di inclusione sociale grazie alla partecipazione di Anastasiia Shmatina di Humilitas e Chiara Renzi di Casa Scalabrini 634 entrambi programmi dell’Agenzia Scalabriniana per la Cooperazione allo Sviluppo.

Approfondimenti:

Bioethics during COVID-19 Final Report

Bioethics during COVID-19 Final Report

By Serena Montefusco

Since January 2020, the world has been facing a new challenge. Most employees could no longer go to work, most students could no longer attend their school, and most countries faced an economic crisis because of the pandemic. They were forced to be familiar with life during a pandemic. Most of the the world’s population had to stop for a period, the so-called quarantine, for the benefit of the most vulnerable people. Many people came to discover the values of the family, solidarity, and sharing.  At the same time, many people faced hard medical decisions that escalated into ethical debates. Since January 2020, the world has been dealing with the Coronavirus.  Much has been said in the last months about this new virus and our UNESCO Chair in Bioethics and Human Rights (UNESCOBIOCHAIR) together with the Anáhuac University, Mexico and the Pontifical Athenaeum Regina Apostolorum (APRA), contributed to research and global discussions about the global pandemic by organizing an international two-days webinar entitled “Bioethics during COVID-19” from July 3rd to July 4th 2020. 

Watch the entire video and download the presentations

 

During the webinar, both international experts in bioethics, philosophy, biomedicine, theology, ethics, and students, gathered in front of their computers for all around the world, engaged in a personalist reflection upon the ethical issues related to the pandemic and its management. Moreover, they discussed the bioethical challenges (clinical, social and political) and the responses of different people and institutions worldwide. During the first afternoon of discussions Prof. P. Joseph Tham, LC, Prof. Laura Palazzani, Prof. Alberto García Gómez, Prof. Lourdes Velázquez, Prof. P. Michael Baggot, LC, and Prof. P. Louis Melahn, LC, intervened with their presentations.

First, Prof. P. Joseph Tham, LC, School of Bioethics (APRA) and Chair fellow (UNESCOBIOCHAIR) gave an overview and conjectures of a Post-COVID future that emphasized the misconception of medicine due to the increased availability and effectiveness of technology. He also reflected upon how scientific knowledge is not really as certain and definitive as the media portrays and that usually takes years of research to arrive at a consensus. In fact, he affirmed that “the changes in our perception makes this epidemic indeed unprecedented.”

Second, Prof. Laura Palazzani, LUMSA University, analyzed the following theories: libertarian theory, utilitarian theory and theories that focus on equality between human beings. She compared conceptual premises and arguments critically, and referred to the main documents of national and international scientific societies and bioethics committees. She assessed the issue of the allocation of health care resources in conditions of scarcity in the context of the bioethical discussion in relation to the COVID-19 pandemic and the question of access to treatment.

Third, Prof. Alberto García Gómez, Director of UNESCOBIOCHAIR, presented the importance of providing an overview of the core ethical values that would help to undertake responsibility for problems and challenges when planning and carrying out research of a new vaccine or new therapeutic drugs.

Fourth, Prof. Lourdes Velázquez, Panamerican University, Mexico, gave a philosophical overview of: human fragility, human impotence, limited efficiency of technoscience, rediscovery of common good and human solidarity, and the incumbent presence of death. She affirmed that “the results of this reflections can point out responsibilities of the political power and produce hostility against philosophers and the effort of silencing their voice, reminding us of the example of Socrates.”

Fifth, Prof. P. Michael Baggot, LC, School of Bioethics (APRA) and Chair fellow (UNESCOBIOCHAIR) and Prof. P. Louis Melahn, LC, School of Bioethics (APRA), examined the arguments for and against the approach of some scholars that advocate that it would be morally acceptable in a crisis to withdraw resources like life support and ICU beds from one patient in favor of another, if, in the judgment of medical personnel, the other patient has a significantly better prognosis. Based upon an analysis according to the principle of double effect, they affirmed that “it is inadmissible to withdraw life-saving medical interventions from patients who are still benefiting from them, on the sole grounds that other patients might benefit more.”

The second afternoon, like the first one, was filled with interesting presentations and discussions. On July 4th, Prof, Marieli de los Ríos, Dr. Lillian Omutoko, Dr. Walter Jaoko, Prof. Fr. Christopher Mahar, Prof. Mariel Kalkash, and Dr. Dafna Feinholz Klip intervened to give their perspectives regarding the pandemic.

First, Prof. Marieli de los Ríos, Anahuac University, Mexico and Research Scholar (UNESCOBIOCHAIR) Dr. Lillian Omutoko and Dr. Walter Jaoko, University of Nairobi, Kenya, presented the “Ethical Criteria Guideline for health emergencies in Mexico in the context of COVID -19 pandemic”.

This document aims at responding to the time of health emergency declared in Mexico March 30th by giving an overview of the situation, the ethical guidelines, and the main terminology in the context of Covid-19.

Second, Prof. Fr. Christopher Mahar, Dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development. Vatican, spoke of how the care being offered to the sick in this context can be best delivered when it embraces the dignity of every human person as a vital part of the whole human family, seeking always to bring about the common good while respecting the principles of subsidiarity and solidarity with those most vulnerable.

Third, Prof. Mariel Kalkach, Anahuac University, Mexico and Research Scholar (UNESCOBIOCHAIR), presented the “ADD KNOW-ledge to your Decision-Making Practical Guideline 4 Ethical Clinical Decision-Making in Scenarios with Scarce Resources During the COVID-19 Pandemic.” The purpose of this guideline is to provide healthcare workers responding to the pandemic with an ethical framework for decision-making. She presented a list of ten recommendations divided into their associations to four words (Ask, Do, Don’t, Know) to help their memorization.

Fourth, Dr. Dafna Feinholz Klip, Chief of the Bioethics and Ethics of Science Section, within UNESCO’s Social and Human Science Sector, presented the work of IBC and COMEST that as international advisory bodies in the field of bioethics and ethics of science and technology, recognize the urgency to go beyond political frontiers, geographical borders, and cultural differences, in order to focus on our common need and shared responsibility to engage in a dialogue to find measures to overcome the dramatic situation. She affirmed that “In such emergencies, the role of bioethics and ethics committees, at national, regional and international levels, is to sustain a constructive dialogue, based on the conviction that political decisions need to be scientifically grounded and ethically inspired and guided.”

Moreover, during the two-days webinar around 15 APRA alumni had the possibility to give 5 minute presentations on the main topics discussed during the webinar.

The UNESCO Chair in Bioethics and Human Rights has worked since 2009 to Foster the Art of Convergence and Cooperation in Global Ethics. Thanks to APRA and Anahuac University support, had the possibility to create another forum of diverse bioethics thought leaders, this time in a different setting, but with the same enthusiasm, in a spirit of respect and friendship, that characterized our mission.

Bioethics during COVID-19 Final Report

Book of Abstracts of the Webinar “Bioethics during Covid19” Now Available

The UNESCO Chair in Bioethics and Human Rights in collaboration with the School of Bioethics of the Pontifical Athenaeum Regina Apostolorum and Anahuac University, responds to the current pandemic emergency, proposing a free WebinarBioethics during Covid-19” via videoconference and streaming 3 – 4 July from 3:00pm to 6:30pm. Simultaneous translation in English, Italian, and Spanish. A great opportunity for intercultural and international dialogue.

Watch the entire video and download the presentations

Read the full program

Read the book of abstracts

Download the flyer