Back in 1969 when Daniel Callahan and his colleagues founded the first bioethics research institute, the Hastings Center, they are reported to have been said they wanted to give philosophy "some social bite, some relevance". The Jerusalem Forum for Bioethics pursues this goal, aiming to make bioethics more relevant to academia, public policy and practice. By bringing to light many of the most pressing issues and problems discussed and analyzed in this expanding area, it is believed that bioethics will not only make more difference to society but that its goals, focus and development will also be re-shaped and re-thought by members of the community within which it strives the most.
The Forum was established in September 2009 by Dr. Daniel Sperling
with the help of the Faculty of Medicine and the School of Public Health at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. It has four main goals:
1. To create real and virutal platforms for research in which faculty, researchers, professionals, and graduate students from various disciplines such as medicine, law, philosophy, social sciences and scientific religions present, review, share and comment on works in progress and/or recent articles dealing with the current field of medical ethics and bioethics, and exchange ideas and knowledge with each other.
2. To institutionalize an academic community with common interests in bioethics so that working relationships and research collaborations could be developed and strengthen.
3. To initiate, propose and organize academic events in the field of bioethics at the Faculty of Medicine, including international and domestic conferences, seminars, guest lectures and more.
4. To consider, examine and discuss the development of a bioethics research center sponsored by the Faculty of Medicine and/or others, and to identify needs of teaching, research and development projects in the area of bioethics.