Presentation on theme: "Jessica Wyndham, Project Director"— Presentation transcript:
1 “Article 15”: the Right to Enjoy the Benefits of Scientific Progress and Its Applications Jessica Wyndham, Project DirectorAAAS Science and Human Rights ProgramJanuary 22, 2010
2 Outline Science and Human Rights Program Prologue Context: International human rights frameworkDefinition: What does the right mean?Application: The right in practiceA role for the scientific community
4 Science and Human Rights Program Article 15, International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural RightsStates shall:1. recognize the right of everyone to (b) enjoy the benefits of scientific progress and its applications;2. conserve, develop and diffuse science and culture;3. respect the freedom indispensable for scientific research and creative activity; and4. recognize the benefits of international contacts and co-operation in the scientific and cultural fields.
5 Evolution of the right to science Science and Human Rights ProgramEvolution of the right to science19481966American Declaration on the Rights and Duties of Man“Right to participate in the benefits that result from intellectual progress, especially scientific discoveries” (Article 13)Universal Declaration of Human Rights“Right to share in scientific advancement and its benefits” (Article 27)International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights“Right to enjoy the benefits of scientific progress and its applications” (Article 15)
6 Broad acceptance of the right Science and Human Rights ProgramBroad acceptance of the rightInternational declaration and resolutions:bioethics (2005); human genetic data (2003); environment (2003); scientific progress (1994)Regional treaties and declarations:Europe: biomedicine (1997); Americas: economic, social and cultural rights (1988); human rights (1948)National constitutions:Armenia (1995); Moldova (1994); Paraguay (1992)Among others…
7 Questions still to be answered Science and Human Rights ProgramQuestions still to be answeredWhy have you never heard of this right?Is it a realistic right?What does the right mean?Who is responsible for implementing the right?Is there a role for scientists in defining the right?What can scientists do to promote implementation of the right?
8 International human rights framework Science and Human Rights ProgramContext:International human rights framework
9 Universal Declaration of Human Rights Science and Human Rights ProgramUniversal Declaration of Human Rights(1948)1st international comprehensive statement of human rightsbasis for later national, regional, international human rights commitmentsbasic principles, not law
10 International Bill of Rights Science and Human Rights ProgramInternational Bill of Rights
11 Science and Human Rights Program International Covenant onCivil and Political Rights(1966)International Covenant onEconomic, Social andCultural Rights(1966)LifeTortureInformationExpressionAssociationPolitical participation …WorkHousingHealthEnvironmentCultureBenefits of Scientific Progress …
12 Economic, social and cultural rights Science and Human Rights ProgramEconomic, social and cultural rightsEach State Party to the present Covenant undertakes to take steps, individually and through international assistance and co-operation, especially economic and technical, to the maximum of its available resources, with a view to achieving progressively the full realization of the rights recognized in the present Covenant by all appropriate means, including particularly the adoption of legislative measures.Article 2(1), International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights
13 All human rights are: Science and Human Rights Program universal: everyone, without exceptioninalienable: cannot be waived or taken awayindivisible, interdependent, and inter-related: come as a packageresponsibility: governments
14 Nature of government responsibilities Science and Human Rights ProgramNature of government responsibilitiesRespect: cannot do anything that will violate a human rightProtect: cannot allow a third party to do anything that will violate a human rightFulfill: must do what is needed to make sure a human right is enjoyed
15 What does this right mean? Science and Human Rights ProgramDefinition:What does this right mean?
16 The UNESCO process: The Venice Statement Science and Human Rights ProgramThe UNESCO process:The Venice Statement
17 Science and Human Rights Program The UNESCO ProcessProcess:three experts’ meetings over two years involving approximately 40 participantsPurpose:to launch a process of research and dialogue on the content of this rightParticipants:lawyers, academics, medical ethicists, human rights practitioners, UN experts, AAAS
18 Science and Human Rights Program The Venice Statement: a preliminary vision Components: Fundamental Principles Normative Content Respect… Protect… Fulfill…
19 Venice Statement: Fundamental Principles Science and Human Rights ProgramVenice Statement: Fundamental PrinciplesRight applicable across all disciplinesScience and applications must be compatible with human rightsRight is relevant to civil and political, and economic, social and cultural rightsRight linked to scientific freedom, rights of authors, food, health, environment etcRight can be enjoyed individually and collectivelyRight should applied consistently with precautionary principleImplementation requires close international cooperation
20 Venice Statement: Normative Content Science and Human Rights ProgramVenice Statement: Normative ContentThe normative content should be directed towards:Creation of an enabling and participatory environmentEnjoyment of the applications of the benefits of scientific progress, implying non-discriminatory accessProtection from abuse and adverse effects of science and its applications
21 Venice Statement: Duty to Respect… Science and Human Rights ProgramVenice Statement: Duty to Respect…Freedoms indispensable for scientific research, including thought, to hold opinions, and seek, receive and impart informationRight of scientists to form and join professional societiesFreedom to collaborate with others both within and across international borders, including free exchange of information, research ideas and results
22 Venice Statement: Duty to Protect… Science and Human Rights ProgramVenice Statement: Duty to Protect…Take measures to prevent use by third parties of S&T to the detriment of human rightsTake measures to ensure the protection of the rights of human subjects, in particular the right to information, and free and informed consent
23 Venice Statement: Duty to Fulfill… Science and Human Rights ProgramVenice Statement: Duty to Fulfill…Adopt a legal, policy and institutional framework to promote the development and diffusion of sciencePromote access to the benefits of science on a non-discriminatory basisMonitor the potentially harmful effects of S&TEncourage and strengthen international cooperation and assistance in S&TProvide opportunities for public engagement in decision-making about S&TInstitute effective science curricula at all levels
24 Application: The right in practice Science and Human Rights ProgramApplication:The right in practice
25 Government responsibility Science and Human Rights ProgramGovernment responsibility160 governments have ratified the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural RightsThe US has signed, but not ratified the CovenantRatification:The treaty becomes part of the law of that country.Signatory:The government can not violate the “object and purpose” of that treaty.
26 Explicit action to implement right: examples Science and Human Rights ProgramExplicit action to implement right: examplesConstitutional:incorporation of the right in domestic constitutionLegislative:protecting scientific freedomsupporting scientific associations or societiesJudicial:regulating practices within the pharmaceutical industryFunding:support for research in identified areas of societal need
27 Implicit implementation of the right: examples Science and Human Rights ProgramImplicit implementation of the right: examplesBrazil: improving access to HIV/AIDS treatmentBurundi: partnering with industry for health and educationUnited Kingdom: protecting scientific freedom and researchersUNITAID: international cooperation for public health
28 Implicit implementation of the right: United States Science and Human Rights ProgramImplicit implementation of the right: United StatesPriority review vouchers:- encouraging research into neglected diseasesOpen access: National Institutes of Health- providing access to scientific findingsFunding criteria: National Science Foundation- assessing ‘broader impacts’ of R&DForeign policy:- promoting unfettered internet access
29 A role for the scientific community Science and Human Rights ProgramA role for the scientific community
30 Science and Human Rights Coalition Venice Statement17. “The comprehensive elucidation of this right, raising awareness of it, its implementation, and the monitoring of its realization require the cooperation and participation of [among others]… the scientific and academic communities.”
31 Science and Human Rights Program “States shall recognize the right of everyone … to enjoy the benefits of scientific progress and its applications.”-- International Covenant on Economic, Social, and Cultural Rights, Article 15“To advance science and innovation throughout the world for the benefit of all people”-- AAAS Mission“To advance the broader chemistry enterprise and its practitioners for the benefit of Earth and its people.”-- American Chemical Society Mission
32 Science and Human Rights Program What can you do?Increase your knowledge and understandingRaise awareness within your organizationnewsletters, Annual Meeting sessions, trainingsUse the right to inform your work:when setting funding and research prioritieswhen designing and assessing research methodologiesRely on the right explicitly as appropriate:when addressing governments bound by the rightwhen advocating for policy change based on law or principle
33 What is the Coalition doing? Science and Human Rights ProgramWhat is the Coalition doing?Through the Coalition’s Joint Initiative:Raising awareness about the right: trainings, information materials, sessionsEngaging scientific organizations in the elucidation of the rightExploring how the right relates to standards of good scientific practiceIdentifying indicators for measuring compliance with the rightAnd more…
34 Article 15 Project AAAS Science and Human Rights Program Working with scientists to bring theirskills and influential voices to bear on thepromotion and application of theright to the benefits of scientific progress.