Worldwide cultural differences in socio-ethical views in relation to biotechnology
The research rapport Worldwide cultural differences in socio-ethical views in relation to biotechnology has been conducted in by dr. H. van den Belt (Wageningen UR) en prof.dr. F.W.J. Keulartz (Wageningen UR/Radboud Universiteit Nijmegen) for COGEM. The aim of the research project was formulated to obtain insight into the significance of global differences in culture for the weighing of utility and risk (proportionality) with regard to applications of biotechnology. The identification of dominant values and how they affect key choices in the process of developing and marketing biotechnological products.
The background for this research question is formed by the remarkable rise of several Asian countries in biotechnological research and the suspicion that these countries may not hold the same views as western countries on the ethical acceptability of developments in biotechnology. Europe and the US, by contrast, are held to share many norms and values, at least with regard to red biotechnology. Where global
differences in culture are the intended subject of inquiry, it thus seems that the main focus is to be on the differences between Europe and the US on the one hand and Asian countries on the other. Or as the COGEM Achtergrondstudies state: “After all, the cultural differences between Europe and the US on the one hand and Asia on the other are considerable”.