Ethics of research with children: would you make the call?
Tuesday, 20 September 2016
Dr Thomas Murray will be exploring in his public lecture titled Relationships, Autonomy, and the Ethics of Research on Children as part of the Personhood: Autonomy and Vulnerability research symposium.
Your child, who might be as young as three and a half months old, was about to have surgery for congenital heart disease. While under anaesthesia the investigator could remove her thymus gland and stitch a full-thickness skin graft from an unrelated adult to her chest in order to explore the role of the thymus in immune regulation and tissue rejection.
Would you have any questions for the researcher? Would you consent for your child to be enrolled in his study?
These are the type of scenarios Dr Thomas Murray will be exploring in his public lecture titled Relationships, Autonomy, and the Ethics of Research on Children as part of the Personhood: Autonomy and Vulnerability research symposium hosted by Australian Catholic University’s (ACU) Institute for Religion and Critical Inquiry (IRCI) at the ACU Leadership Centre in Brisbane on Monday 26 September.
Dr Murray is a leading voice in the bioethics space, serving as the President of The Hastings Center for more than a decade – a world-leader in ethical issues in the areas of health, health care, life sciences research, and the environment.
Symposium Chief Investigator, Dr David Kirchhoffer from the Centre for Moral Philosophy and Applied Ethics at IRCI, said the topic of human research ethics continues to be a contentious issue, particularly around consent for children.
“This symposium is bringing together leading experts of the calibre of Dr Murray to explore some of the major ethical factors relating to human research ethics,” Dr Kirchhoffer said.
“Dr Murray’s paper and public lecture will be one of the most talked about and brings to the forefront an issue that impacts how we approach the very question of consent for someone who is unable to give it themselves.
“It promises to be an enlightening presentation that is sure to spark meaningful discussion.”