The emergence of Bioethics in the United States of America, in the early 1960s, as a result of many social, technological, political and philosophical factors, has had a very significant influence on medicine, health policy and public policy in general in the United states. For every factor that influenced bioethics in the United States, what has been happening in the rest of the world? What would comparative analyses of development in bioethics in Europe, Asia, Africa and Latin America reveal? Has there been mainly a transfer of ideas and experience from the United States to other countries to then be modified according to their circumstances? To what extent has bioethics outside the United States emerged in original forms from the social, political, technological, philosophical and historical context of those countries? To what extent has bioethics in the United States been influenced by happenings in other countries? How much room is there for collaboration among countries in the further development of bioethics? How much attention has been given to characterising the ways in which bioethics is evolving outside the United States? The agenda of the conference was designed to address those and similar questions. Accounts and discussions of the birth of bioethics in the United States were followed by European, Asian and African perspectives and consideration of related legal and legislative issues.
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