IUBS Ethics Commission 2010 Achievements

Ethics education

an online ethics course (http://en.wikiversity.org/wiki/Environmental_bioethics) went live in September 2009. The course comprises a series of self-asessed case-study based modules, encouraging the “students” to work their way through ethical dilemmas. A scenario is provided for assessment, following which students choose a desired option. Their choice is submitted electronically. The student is then given the likely outputs (which often based on a real case study). They then have an opportunity to re-evaluate their choice.

Biological Outreach in Developing Communities

In 2010 IEC and partner RMIT University undertook the first phase in an outreach project for Aboriginal children in northern Australia. In this fully field-based course, Aboriginal children will be challenged to inculcate their own perspectives of the natural environment, such as how it sustains their values and culture, with Western perspectives. This pilot programme is a synergy of bioethics and biological education, and hopefully will result in similar projects elsewhere.


Conferences organised: One in planning stage for 2012

Workshops organised: One ethics workshop held in New Zealand, involving Australians and New Zealanders; On-line discussion groups established, with two surveys held, preliminary meeting in Darwin held.

Publications: Web resources developed, website updated

Impacts on education: Positive; self paced learning resources and international ethics workshop in New Zealand focussed on 17 year olds.

Relevance for the scientific community: significant, allows focus on issues such as conservation of biodiversity as a moral issue.

Development of partnership: yes - with BioEd

Innovation: yes - new online course