IVth International Congress of the Latin America and the Caribbean Bioethics Network on Bioethics, Human rights and Social Inclusion

The IVth International Congress of the Latin America and the Caribbean Bioethics Network, created by UNESCO, will be held in Brasilia (Brazil) from 29 November to 1 December 2012, and focus on the theme “Bioethics, Human rights and Social Inclusion”. Experts in the field of bioethics will examine the ways in which bioethics can contribute to the development of public policies and activities in the area of life-long education which will favour the implementation of strategies oriented towards social inclusion and equity in health issues.

This conference will be an opportunity to discuss the current regional context concerning human rights and the commitment of bioethics to address key challenges faced by the populations of Latin America and the Caribbean, such as inequalities in health and income, or violations of human rights of minority groups. It will also provide a unique occasion to strengthen cooperation projects in the region between bioethics students and former bioethics students.

During the opening ceremony, the main organizers of the conference will take the podium one after the other to set the stakes of the conference. The work will then be punctuated by round tables, panel discussions, and two major keynote lectures: the first will open the proceedings on 29 November and be given by Dr Volnei Garrafa (Brazil), President of the UNESCO Chair in Bioethics at the University of Brasilia, and member of the International Bioethics Committee (IBC) of UNESCO; while the second, given by Dr. Victor Penchaszadeh (Argentina), will close the conference with a presentation of current and future perspectives of bioethics in Latin America and the Caribbean.

In between the two lectures, more than 400 experts and students from several countries in the region, including Argentina, Brazil, Colombia, Cuba, Jamaica and Peru, will exchange for three intense days their experiences and thoughts on dozens of topics, including:

  • Human rights as the basis for interventions in bioethics in the region;
  • The development of the interface between bioethics and human rights in Latin America and the Caribbean;
  • Ethical conflicts in healthcare relationships;
  • Philosophical approaches to bioethics;
  • Ethics of research;
  • Ethical aspects of new technologies;
  • Clinical bioethics;
  • Challenges of bioethics of diversity: indigenous people and traditional knowledge;
  • Bioethics, gender perspective and human rights: the case of genetic studies;
  • Bioethics and global environmental change;
  • Bioethics, social inclusion and equality in health;
  • Bioethics education in Latin America and the Caribbean;
  • Cooperation, consensus and standards on bioethics in Latin America and the Caribbean;
  • Bioethics and public health policy, etc..

UNESCO’s bioethics programme in the region will be presented by Dr. Susana Vidal, from the UNESCO Office in Montevideo (Uruguay), during the closing ceremony of the conference.

The target audience is composed of technicians and representatives of the public health administration, health students and teachers of bioethics, public health and other related subjects, as well as health professionals, lawyers or even philosophers, all interested in bioethical issues.