What is biotechnology? What are its goals? Are there global benefits, or are there more perils than promises? Why is it that the poor remain poor? This book exposes biotechnology within a global context and challenges us to cultivate a shared humane vision. Part one outlines major global issues and international policies. Here we see the ubiquitous tension between commercialization and equitable access. The need for global partnership is clear. Part two examines specific biotechnological challenges in various cultures: genetic research in the U.S.A.; genetic testing and regulatory concerns in Canada; embryonic research in Europe; overcoming past legacies in the former Soviet republic; Jewish and Islamic perspectives on biotechnologies; food security issues in Africa; Confucianism in Asia; and the role of indigenous cultures. Part three explores global challenges: the need to balance intellectual property rights and fair access; the need for media sensitivity to cultural contexts; finally, the need to better understand and prepare for bioterrorism. Although western voices still dominate the discussion, it is time to listen to other viewpoints from other cultures. This book embraces a global voice and message: Cross-cultural bridge-building is needed now, more than ever.
This is a fascinating collection of essays for two reasons. It covers an extraordinarily broad range of issues at the forefront of contemporary bioethical debates. It also articulates among cultural diversities what are shared values in applications of biotechnology across cultural, political, and religious boundaries.
Part 1 Introduction: The Need for Cross-Cultural Considerations in Biotechnology Part 2 International Overviews and Policies Chapter 3 Commercialization and Benefit-Sharing of Biotechnology: Cross-Cultural Concerns? Chapter 4 The International Human Genome Project: An Overview Chapter 5 Ethical and Legal Aspects of Biotechnology Part 6 Specific Challenges in Cultures and Nations Chapter 7 The Ethics and Policy Issues in Creating a Stem Cell Donor: A Case Study in Reproductive Genetics Chapter 8 Optimizing Safety and Benefits of Genetic Testing: A Look at the Canadian Policy Chapter 9 Experimentation on Human Embryos: The Bioethical Discussion in Europe with Special Attention to Austria and Germany Chapter 10 The Cultural Challenge of Biotechnology in Post-Communist Europe Chapter 11 Why Is This Gene Different from All Other Genes? The Jewish Approach to Biotechnology Chapter 12 Islamic Perspectives on Biotechnology Chapter 13 Agricultural Biotechnology in African Countries Chapter 14 Autonomy, Humane Medicine, and Research Ethics: An East Asian Perspective Chapter 15 Indigenous Knowledge, Patenting, and the Biotechnology Industry Part 16 Specific Global Challenges Chapter 17 Cross-Cultural Issues in Balancing Patent Rights and Consumer Access to Biotechnological and Pharmaceutical Inventions Chapter 18 Media, Biotechnology, and Culture Chapter 19 Tricksters, The Plague, and Mirrors: Biotechnology, Bioterrorism, and Justice