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Ethical Issues in Human Genomics and Big Data

14-03-2016 - 18-03-2016


‘Ethical Issues in Human Genomics and Big Data: the need for Responsible Research and Innovation Innovation’ is the title of the advanced European Bioethics Course which will be organized from 14-18 March 2016 by the department of IQ Healthcare, sub-department Healthcare Ethics, Radboud University Medical Center.

In this course the nature of human-technology relations will be explored as well as their value. The focus will be on ethical dimensions of developments in medical technology and genomics. Debates about new technologies reveal a need to consider their pro’s and con’s, preferably at an early stage of their development. At that point it is still possible to alter the technology or choose an intelligent implementation strategy that helps to realize its most attractive aspects and diminish the influence of the less attractive aspects. Such early ethical engagement contributes to responsible innovation.

Keynote speaker

Prof. dr. Peter Paul Verbeek is professor of Philosophy of Technology and co-director of the DesignLab of the University of Twente. Verbeek’s research focuses on the social and cultural roles of technology and the ethical and anthropological aspects of human-technology relations.

Course design

In the first two days of this course the primary focus will be on developments in genomics and genetic modification and its consequences for public health interventions, curative medicine, patients and citizens. Ethical questions will be addressed by different stakeholders, such as scientists, engineers, health care providers, and a patient. The debates will be analyzed according to moral frameworks provided during the course. Socratic reasoning and discourse analysis will especially be part of the these day.
During the third and fourth day of this course we aim to provide an insight into the philosophy and ethics of responsible innovation. We will study the meaning of ‘responsibility’ in responsible research and innovation, explore the role of imagination in moral reflection about technologies that still have to come about, and become acquainted with concrete tools to conduct responsible innovation.


Include: prof. Evert van Leeuwen,  Simone van der Burg PhD, prof. Hub Zwart, PhD, Jasper Bovenberg JD, LLM, PhD, Andre Krom  PhD, Vincent Blok PhD, Steven Dorrestijn PhD, Marianne Boenink PhD.
The lectures by these various experts will introduce basic philosophical and ethical concepts related to genomics and responsible innovation. There will be ample time for plenary discussion with these experts. Small group discussions and working groups are devoted to in-depth exploration and discussions of particular contemporary ethical issues.


This course is designed with participants from various backgrounds in mind: researchers working in the field of human genetics, biomedical sciences, life sciences, genetics and biology and physicians doing research that has a genetic component but also for professionals from other areas in healthcare such as physicians and nurses, health care administrators, bioethics committee members, professionals working in the pharmaceutical industry, professionals in the areas of ethics, philosophy and theology, and PhD students undertaking courses of study in any of these areas.


Erasmus Mundus Bioethics
0031 (0) 24 – 3613359 / 0031 (0) 24 - 3615320
View Organiser Website


Radboud University Nijmegen Medical Centre
Nijmegen, Netherlands + Google Map

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