Biopolitical Times

The Center for Genetics and Society blog highlights the latest developments in the social, political, and ethical implications of human biotechnologies, with contributions from staff, fellows, consultants, and guest authors.

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World map showing countries that prohibit heritabl human genome editing in red

Public and policy conversations about heritable human genome editing often leave the impression that rules governing it are few and far between. Many news reports and scholarly articles present global governance as starting from a more or less blank slate; some also suggest that global agreement on this controversial issue would be unlikely. This view skims over some inconvenient facts, like the existence of the Oviedo Convention, a binding international treaty signed by 29 European countries, which prohibits heritable...

Biopolitical Times

Proposition 14, the California ballot initiative that, if passed, would continue and increase public financing for the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine (CIRM), seems to be on the verge of succeeding, though the voting results are not official. As of Friday the 13th, 93.1% of the state’s precincts have reported, and the Yes votes lead the No’s by 51.0%–49.0%, a lead of just over 320,000 out of more than 15.7 million ballots counted. According to the Los Angeles Times, it was the...

Image of Sonoma State Home, site of the highest number of eugenic sterilizations in California, courtesy of Alexandra Minna Stern.

Last month we were among many who were outraged when news broke of the alleged involuntary sterilizations of women...

In a wide-ranging conversation on September 22, a stellar panel grappled with an ambitious agenda announced by the event’s title: “Climate Crisis, Designer Babies and Pandemics: Challenging the Techno-Utopianism of the Genetically Engineered Age.” You can view and hear the...