Ethics, Public Policy, and Health

August 16, 2021 - August 22, 2021
Ethics and Public Policy Laboratory, Catholic University of Central Africa


View the Call For Papers


  • Harvard University Edmond J. Safra Center for Ethics
  • Harvard Medical School Center for Bioethics
  • Stanford University McCoy Family Center for Ethics in Society
  • Rutgers University Center for Population-Level Bioethics
  • University of Geneva Institute for Ethics, History and the Humanities
  • University of St. Gallen Competence Center for African Research
  • Université du Québec à Rimousky Groupe de recherche en Ethique Ethos
  • Catholic University of Central Africa Ethics and Public Policy Laboratory


Caesar Atuire
University of Ghana
University of Geneva
Cornell University (PhD)
Shlomi Segall
Hebrew University of Jerusalem
University of Ottawa
King's College London
University College London


Harvard University
American University of Nigeria
Catholic University of Louvain
Thalia Porteny
Tufts University

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Yaoundé Seminar: Ethics, Health, and Public Policy 

August 16-22, 2021

Health makes a significant contribution to what we can do and be in our lives. Today, equipped with knowledge about the medical, social, and behavioural determinants of health, we have an unprecedented opportunity to achieve healthy conditions of life for broad and diverse populations. Conversely, through inaction or inattention we risk adding to health and social inequalities that arise between individuals, groups, and states, leaving populations less healthy than they otherwise ought to be. The policies that state-actors adopt with respect to health and health care have a key role to play in negotiating between these alternate futures. Yet even with the best intentions, public policymakers, particularly in developing nations, must grapple with complexities introduced by limited resources, weak institutions, global power structures, complex relationships with international and private health actors, and local traditions and values, in steering a course forward.

This situation raises several questions of ethics, public policy, and health: what do state actors owe their populations with respect to securing healthy conditions of life? How should public policies be structured to efficiently promote and fairly distribute population health? And how should the particular histories, cultures, values, institutions, partnerships, and socioeconomic realities of developing nations inform answers to these questions?

This Yaoundé Seminar plans to approach these questions both from the perspective of analytical political philosophy, ethics, rights-based frameworks, and from the perspective of non-Western traditions, e.g. African philosophy. 

Our call for papers has now closed.

About the Yaounde Seminar:

The Yaoundé Seminar is an international interdisciplinary, and invitation-only conference held annually since 2012 in Yaoundé, Cameroon. The aim of the Yaoundé Seminar is to train a diverse new generation of scholars and contribute to the development of ethics as an inclusive field in discourse with public policy, with particular focus on creating relationships between African and non-African scholars and supporting ethics training and capacity in Africa. Seminar participants, including PhD students, postdoctoral fellows, and early career faculty, attend presentations by distinguished scholars in the field, present their research in moderated panels and seminars, and receive one-on-one mentorship on their research projects, in addition to building community through shared meals and experiences in Cameroon. The seminar typically lasts for a full week with 4 days of seminar activity and 1 day of organized tourism.

For more information: [email protected]

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June 30, 2021, 5:00am WAT

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Kelsey Berry
Kelsey Berry

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