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Ethics in Public Policy-Making: The Case of Human Enhancement (EPOCH)

Ethics in Public Policy-Making: The Case of Human Enhancement (EPOCH)
Project team:

Coenen, Christopher (Project leader); Arianna Ferrari (Project coordination); Armin Grunwald; Leonhard Hennen


European Commission

Start date:


End date:


Project partners:

University of Bristol, Università degli Studi di Padova, Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, Universiteit Maastricht, Univerza v Ljubljani, Swansea University, National University of Singapore, Aarhus Universitet, University of Calgary

Research group:

Innovation processes and impacts of technology

Project description

Launched in November 2010, the project "Ethics in Public Policy-Making: The Case of Human Enhancement" (EPOCH) is funded by the European Commission in the Seventh Framework Programme and coordinated by the University of Bristol. Other European partners are the universities of Padua, Aarhus, Ljubljana, Maastricht and Swansea, and the French Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique. Non-European partners are the National University of Singapore and the University of Calgary. ITAS will take part in all work packages and is the lead partner for the project's communication strategy and for the working area of "Human Enhancement and European Policy-Making", one of EPOCH's three working areas.

The overarching goal of EPOCH is to broaden and deepen knowledge of the role of ethics in the governance of science and technology, focusing on ethical aspects of new and emerging technologies specifically related to the topic of human enhancement (i.e. any modification of the human body aimed at improving performance and achieved by scientific or technological means). By conducting comparative analyses of relevant institutions and current governance and normative frameworks at European and national level (including non-EU countries and taking into account selected non-European countries), a comprehensive approach to the governance of contentious developments in science, technology and society will be outlined. This will include guidance and strategic options for governance activities in Europe, as well as specific proposals for public policies on selected enhancement technologies, focusing on physical enhancement in sport.

EPOCH Project Final Conference: epochconference2012.wordpress.com/



Dipl.-Pol. Christopher Coenen
Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT)
Institute for Technology Assessment and Systems Analysis (ITAS)
P.O. Box 3640
76021 Karlsruhe

Tel.: +49 721 608-24559