Limiting and facilitating access to innovations in medicine and agriculture: a brief exposition of the ethical arguments


Authors
Cristian Timmermann
University of Chile
Abstract
Taking people’s longevity as a measure of good life, humankind can proudly say that the average person is living a much longer life than ever before. The AIDS epidemic has however for the first time in decades stalled and in some cases even reverted this trend in a number of countries. Climate change is increasingly becoming a major challenge for food security and we can anticipate that hunger caused by crop damages will become much more common. -/- Since many of the challenges humanity faced in the past were overcome by inventive solutions coming from the life sciences, we are compelled to reconsider how we incentivize science and technology development so that those in need can benefit more broadly from scientific research. There is a huge portion of the world population that is in urgent need for medicines to combat diseases that are currently neglected by the scientific community and could immensely benefit from agricultural research that specifically targets their environmental conditions. At the same time efforts have to be made to make the fruits of current and future research more widely accessible. These changes would have to be backed by a range of moral arguments to attract people with diverging notions of global justice. This article explores the main ethical theories used to demand a greater share in the benefits from scientific progress for the poor. Since life sciences bring about a number of special concerns, a short list of conflictive issues is also offered.
Keywords Global justice  Human rights  Access to medicines  Benefiting from science  Intellectual property  Agricultural ethics  science policy  access to innovation  incentives  technical cooperation
Categories (categorize this paper)
ISBN(s)
DOI 10.1186/s40504-014-0008-5
Options
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Request removal from index
Revision history

Download options

Our Archive
Through your library

References found in this work BETA

Practical Ethics.John Martin Fischer & Peter Singer - 1983 - Philosophical Review 92 (2):264.
Sharing in or Benefiting From Scientific Advancement?Cristian Timmermann - 2014 - Science and Engineering Ethics 20 (1):111-133.

View all 33 references / Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

Pesticides and the Patent Bargain.Cristian Timmermann - 2015 - Journal of Agricultural and Environmental Ethics 28 (1):1-19.

Add more citations

Similar books and articles

Sharing in or Benefiting From Scientific Advancement?Cristian Timmermann - 2014 - Science and Engineering Ethics 20 (1):111-133.
Patent Funded Access to Medicines.Tom Andreassen - 2015 - Developing World Bioethics 15 (3):152-161.
Industry, Innovation and Social Values.Dr Harvey E. Bale Jr - 2005 - Science and Engineering Ethics 11 (1):31-40.

Analytics

Added to PP index
2014-04-04

Total views
268 ( #22,332 of 2,259,405 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
47 ( #15,540 of 2,259,405 )

How can I increase my downloads?

Downloads

My notes

Sign in to use this feature