June nanoTalks: Ethics

Join our nanoTalks in June and find out which analysis of ethical questions using drones as an example of humanitarian innovation is urgently needed or try to figure out whether certain reproductive technologies, such as embryo adoption, should be legalized in Switzerland in the case of infertility. It's all about ethics before the summer break!

Talk 1: «We Live on Hope» – The Ethics of Using Drones in Post-Disaster Nepal

Presented by Ning Wang, PhD Candidate at the Institute of Biomedical Ethics and History of Medicine, University of Zurich

Humanitarian organizations increasingly implement innovative technologies as they respond to the needs of communities affected by war, disaster or public health emergencies. However, technological innovation intersects with moral values, norms and commitments, and may challenge humanitarian imperatives. Therefore, an analysis of ethical issues associated with humanitarian innovation is a pressing need for understanding what is at stake and how best to move forward. Using drones as an exemplar case of humanitarian innovation, our research aims to answer three questions: 1) What is known about the interplay between technological innovation and ethical values, norms and commitments in the humanitarian use of drones? 2) How should the shared or disparate values of humanitarian stakeholders be interpreted and addressed in the development and deployment of drones? 3) What policies and guidance tools can best direct the integration of ethical values in humanitarian innovations?


Talk 2: Restrictions on Reproductive Medicine in Switzerland

Presented by Valentina Christen-Zihlmann, PhD Candidate at the Faculty of Law, University of Basel

Infertility is a rising problem in Western societies – every sixth couple cannot conceive naturally. Medical research is advancing fast: More and more methods are available in the field of Assisted Reproductive Technologies (ART). The law, however, stays behind. Especially in Switzerland, regulations remain rather cautious and conservative, so that many couples or single women decide to go abroad to fulfill their reproductive wishes. This talk focuses on whether more ARTs, especially embryo adoption, should be legalized in Switzerland. One reason may be because «reproductive tourism» makes the circumvention of Swiss ART bans easy for Swiss people; one can also question whether the conservative approach to what constitutes «a family» in Swiss law is still up to date.

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