Project Details CHEMRAWN XVIII - Ethics, Science and Development

Project No.:
Start Date:
01 April 2009
End Date:
31 December 2009


As a global organization IUPAC and it Committee on Chemical Research Applied to World Needs (CHEMRAWN) acknowledge the need to focus on ethical issues to ensure that chemical research and the application of the chemical sciences are conducted in accordance with basic ethical principles. This has become abundantly clear through many IUPAC activities, and the Union has therefore started the work to draft a code of conduct for chemists (see project 2007-022-2-020). This appears not to be an easy task, also because ethical issues are so broad in scope and context. In any case, ethical conduct cannot be taken for granted nor always be easily settled upon.

A CHEMRAWN Symposium on Ethics, Science and Development is scheduled to take place during the IUPAC Congress in Glasgow in August 2009. The symposium will raise ethical issues relevant to chemists working in a number of settings, from a university research facility to a field campaign in a developing country. Some relevant keywords are scientific misconduct, academic norms under pressure, ethical aspects of intellectual property rights, dual use of chemicals, and the social responsibilities of chemistry, including global equity issues such as the lack of research into new drugs against diseases in developing countries.


Detailed timetable and program to be announced
– see congress website for update

Monday 3 August (afternoon) & Tuesday 4 August (morning)

Keynote Speakers
Science, ethics and responsibility
Sarah Chan, School of Law, University of Manchester, UK

Ethics and precaution in science methodology

Silvio Funtowicz, European Commission – Joint Research Centre, Italy

Chemistry and ethics
Alastair Hay OBE, University of Leeds, UK

Freedom and responsibility for chemistry teachers and learners
Peter Mahaffy, The King’s University College, Edmonton, Canada

Science, ethics and development: Africa’s perspective
Sospeter Muhongo, Director, ICSU Regional Office for Africa, South Africa

Why chemists need a code of conduct
Graham S. Pearson, IUPAC Task Group ‘Recommendations for Codes of Conduct’ and University of Bradford, UK

The chemical weapons convention and the role of the OPCW in promoting international cooperation for the peaceful uses of chemistry
Ambassador Rogelio Pfirter, Director General, Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW)

Ethics of chemistry: Form, content and implementation of hard and soft regulation

Roger Strand, University of Bergen, Norway

Industrial awareness and responsible care
Bernard West, Westworks Consulting, Ltd., Toronto, Canada


Nov 2011 – See also outcome of project 2007-022-2-020: feature entitled “Why Codes of Conduct Matter” published in Chem Int, Nov-Dec 2011, pp. 7-11 (