The Ethics of Health Security

June 24, 2014 - June 26, 2014
Medicine, Ethics, Society and History, University of Birmingham

Room 224
Learning Centre and Primary Care (Building R28)
University of Birmingham B15 2TT
United Kingdom


  • ESRC Seminar Series – Global Health Security
  • Saving Humans Theme of the University of Birmingham's Institute of Advanced Studies

All speakers:

Tom Douglas
University of Oxford
Heather Draper
University of Birmingham
Christian Enemark
Aberystwyth University
Jonathan Herington
Kansas State University
Kadri Simm
University of Tartu
Sridhar Venkatapuram
Kings College London
Am Viens
University of Southampton


Heather Draper
University of Birmingham
Jonathan Herington
Kansas State University

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The past ten years have seen rising interest in the intersection between health and security. The threat of bioterrorism in the post 9/11 world, SARS and influenza pandemics, and perpetual health insecurity in the developing world all pose serious moral, as well as political, challenges. This workshop will explore the normative dimensions of global health security by bringing together moral philosophers, security studies scholars and humanitarian and military medicine practitioners.

Scholars of security have often questioned the value of ‘securitizing’ health, the role it plays in shaping resource allocations, and the potential for new health technologies to create security challenges. In parallel, moral philosophers have been deeply engaged in discussions regarding the most appropriate responses to public health emergencies, emerging biotechnologies and the provision of healthcare in a military context. By bringing these two debates together, we hope to address a number of conceptual and applied questions. These will include: assessing the concept of global health security and its relationship to other concepts such as health promotion and the right to health; analysing the way in which resources are allocated within and between health emergencies; the interface between security policy and new biotechnologies; and the potential ethical challenges which arise when providing healthcare in a conflict zone.

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June 21, 2014, 8:00pm BST

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