Purpose of the Conference

By virtue of the resolution appended prepared by the provisional Bureau, the purpose of the conference is to:

  • promote co-operation between national ethics committees, notably by encouraging exchanges of information and the sharing of experience, developing a European database, carrying out studies on questions of common interest and organising meetings at European or regional level;
  • help countries wishing to set up a national ethics committee to set one up and run it;
  • promote, on a pluralist basis, public debate on ethical issues raised by progress in the fields of biology, medicine and public health.


The conference shall be composed of representatives of national ethics committees (or equivalent bodies) set up in Member States of the Council of Europe.

The government authorities of countries which have no national ethics committee are requested to state which body or bodies could represent their country at the conference.


A standing Bureau was elected in order to ensure greater publicity of the work carried out by the Conference. After the election held at the 9th Conference in May 2007, the Bureau is currently composed as follows: The chairperson is Mrs Rena Petridou (DOC) (Cyprus). The other members of the Bureau are: Professor Jean-Claude Ameisen (France), Dr Givi Javashvili (Georgia), Dr Laszlo Szonyi (Hungary), Mrs Paula Martinho Da Silva (Portugal) and Professor Christoph Rehmann-Sutter (Switzerland).