Seminar "Raising Awareness and Responsibility of Scientists in the Life Sciences", funded by the EU
The International Science and Technology Center (ISTC) and Tajikistan National Academy of Sciences, the Bioethics Council, the Public Organization "TABioS" organized on March 29-31, 2021, at the SAROB, Khoja Obi Garm recreation zone, Varzob district of the Republic of Tajikistan, a training seminar "Raising awareness and responsibility of scientists in life sciences".
The Seminar was opened by the TNAS Vice- President, member- corresponding Saidov A.S., the Senior Project Manager and Diplomatic Advisor from the ISTC Dr Kamen Velichkov, and the Project Manager Dr Nasyrova F.Yu.
This Seminar took place within the framework of a project to raise awareness of the possibility of misuse in the life sciences and the responsibility of scientists for working with materials, knowledge and technologies of dual-use. The project is under the TI CBRN Export Control on Dual-Use Materials and Intangible Technologies in Central Asia, financed by the EU. The project aims to introduce elements of dual-use science into formal education in the natural sciences and engineering in Tajikistan.
The representatives from these institutions attended to the Seminar:
- Bioethics Council, Committee on Medical Bioethics, leading scientists of scientific research institutes of TNAS;
- Ministry of Education and Science of the Republic of Tajikistan, and
- Tajik Agrarian University, the Tajik State Medical University and the Tajik State Pedagogical University and other universities from other regions.
The thirty participants to the Seminar, from the different organizations, students, and experts in life sciences, discussed various topics related to dual-use and responsible science, the international legal framework, among others.
Based on the Seminar results, the participants organized a Round Table, during which several decisions were made. Thus, a Resolution was adopted, which noted the successful holding of a seminar that meets the current level of knowledge in life sciences. It was decided to create a Working Group for the development and release of an educational program (textbook, syllabus, educational methodological and scientific recommendations) on bioethics and biosafety for further implementation in the educational processes of the country's universities.
A draft Code of Conduct for Scientists in the Sciences of Dual-Use has been developed and discussed, which should be submitted for approval by the Bioethics Council and the Tajikistan National Academy of Science Praesidium.
A decision was made on measures to expand the course's introduction in life sciences, bioethics and biosafety in similar and specialized universities of the country.
Also, based on the results of the Seminar, an appeal should be prepared to the Central government bodies and departments of the Republic of Tajikistan on the importance of the topic and on improving state policy (regulatory and legal support, standardization, certification, licensing, advanced training) in life sciences and dual-use, bioethics and biosafety.