Biosecurity and bioethics education: a case study of the UK context

Revill, James (2009) Biosecurity and bioethics education: a case study of the UK context. Discussion Paper. University of Bradford, Bradford.

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Abstract

The purpose of this report is to assess the extent to which life science students and faculty members in the UK are exposed to biosecurity-related issues through social or ethical components in life science degree courses, but also through the content of text books, A-Level exam board syllabi and funders of life science research. The report suggests that biosecurity-related education is currently considered of limited relevance to many life science educators at universities in the UK. Moreover, even within bioethics-type modules linked to life science degree courses, topics such as biosecurity, dual-use and arms control remain a peripheral topic, which is only emerging as an issue within bioethics.There are however grounds for optimism, certainly funders of scientific research in the UK now obligate applicants to take dual-use issues into consideration when submitting funding proposals. In terms of the literature, although references to biosecurity, dual-use and arms control are limited, it appears that because these issues are increasingly salient in the security community discourse, authors of life science text books, in seeking to be contemporary and up to date, may be more amenable to including a reference to the illegality of biological weapons in future editions of text books. Such references, along with continued consideration of biosecurity in funding applications, will be important in building awareness of biosecurity and dual-use in the life science communities thinking.

Item Type: Reports and working papers (Discussion Paper)
Additional Information: Research Report for the Wellcome Trust Project
Schools and Departments: School of Business, Management and Economics > SPRU - Science Policy Research Unit
Subjects: J Political Science > JZ International relations > JZ5511.2 Promotion of peace. Peaceful change > JZ5587 International security. Disarmament. Global survival
Depositing User: James Revill
Date Deposited: 06 Feb 2012 19:50
Last Modified: 31 Aug 2012 10:57
URI: http://sro.sussex.ac.uk/id/eprint/22475
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