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Ethics Week 2018 offers the VUB research community a unique chance to respond to changes in research ethics – changes that are themselves a result of our changing world. Ethics Week offers a series of events around ethical themes that are of interest to the VUB’s younger and more experienced researchers, and to its research policy makers:


  • For young researchers, the events provide a chance to discuss their research and its ethical implications.
  • For more experienced researchers, the events will provide insights into changing obligations, and an understanding of how to support other researchers.
  • For policy makers, the events are an opportunity to understand what it is like for researchers to put principles into practice, and to explain the changes that are occurring.


The events consist of a kick-off session and a series of ethics lunches around important research ethics themes.



Tuesday 4th December 2018


  • Kick-off Session: Research Without Borders? Ethics of international research co-operation


During this panel session, VUB researchers and policy makers will have the chance to respond to the ethical issues relating to international research collaboration.


Panel: Rector Caroline Pauwels; Vice-Rector Internationalisation Romain Meeusen

Location: Green Room (Groene Zaal), Campus Etterbeek

Time: 09:30-11:00

Detailed Programme and Registration here


  • Ethics Lunch 1: Soldiers in the laboratory? Military and civilian research

Recent policy and political changes have changed the environment for military and dual-use research enormously. This session will address various practical and policy aspects of military and civilian research.


Presentations: Alu Cataldo (Brussels Service for Export Control); Diederik Cops (Flemish Peace Institute); Maaike Verbruggen (Institute of European Studies); Zafer Kizilkaya (Political Science)

Location: Red Room (Rode Zaal), Campus Etterbeek

Time: 12:00-14:00

Detailed Programme and Registration here


Wednesday 5 December 2018


  • Ethics Lunch 2: Medical Ethics

Human embryonic stem cell research is one of the most promising but also controversial recent developments in medical research. This session will address the legal and ethical frameworks and challenges for this research field.


Presentations: Professor Hilde Van de Velde (REGE); Professor Karen Sermon (REGE)

Location: Campus Jette - FORUM

Time: 12:00-14:00

Detailed Programme and Registration here



Thursday 6th December 2018


  • Ethics Lunch 3: Ethics, Human and Social Sciences

Doing ethical research in the social sciences and humanities (SSH) requires creativity. During this session, four young VUB researchers will discuss the diverse issues they face when working with different types of vulnerable participants, in when working with cultural artefacts from former colonies.


Presentations: Eugenio Mantovani (Faculty of Law); Michiel De Proost (Gender, Diversity and Intersectionality); Ellen Vermeulen (film-maker); Sanne Sinnige (HARP)

Location: D1.08, Campus Etterbeek

Time: 12:00-14:00

Detailed Programme and Registration here


  • Ethics Lunch 4: Ethics & Animal Testing

Discussions about the practice and justification for animal experiments are a key part of research ethics. This session will address new developments in animal research ethics, including new transparency agreements and specific issues relating to animal experiments and immunology.


Presentations: Kirk Leech (European Animal Research Association); Cleo Goyvaerts (Biomedical Sciences)

Location: D1.08, Campus Etterbeek

Time: 12:00-14:00

Detailed Programme and Registration here


Friday 7th December 2018


  • Ethics Lunch 5: Ethics and Valorisation of Research

As one of Europe’s Top 100 Innovative Universities, valorisation is a key part of the VUB’s research strategy. This sessions addresses ethical issues that arise from research valorisation and from external research funding.


Presentations: Hugo Loosvelt & Kristel Mommaerts (VUB Tech Transfer); Mulongo Dimonekene-Vanneste & Elisabeth Rabaey (VUB Foundation)

Location: D1.07 Campus Etterbeek      

Time: 12:00-14:00

Detailed Programme and Registration here