What we do

We identify, analyse, and advise on ethical issues in biomedicine and health so that decisions in these areas benefit people and society.

Horizon scanning

We run a broad bioethics horizon scanning programme to identify and anticipate where future developments in biomedicine and health have the potential to impact society. These insights are then used to define our programme of work

In-depth inquiries

Inquiries into developments arising from biological and medical research have been our core activity since we were established. They usually take 18-24 months, are overseen by a multidisciplinary working group chosen for that topic, and are informed by extensive consultation and research. At the end of an inquiry, we will usually publish reports including recommendations for policy and practice.


We aim to influence the UK and global policy agenda in a number of areas relating to biomedicine and health. By strengthening the voice of bioethics in policy and public debate, we are working to demonstrate the value of ethics to society and decision makers.


As an active member of the international bioethics community, we collaborate with partners and advise policymakers based overseas. We also contribute to international meetings and conferences, and participate in global networks of national bioethics advisory bodies. By monitoring developments relating to our work around the world we ensure that we are in a position to respond to international developments in biomedicine and health.