Global Citizens’ Assembly on Genome Editing. Connecting citizens, science and global governance
We have reached a singular global moment. We can now edit genes with unprecedented ease and precision—any genes, in almost any living thing, from plants, to insects to people. But public mistrust is building. Hard decisions need to be made. How do we apply this technology? What sort of future do we want? And who gets to decide? The Centre for Deliberative Democracy and Global Governance at the University of Canberra, together with an international network of research partners, are convening the first Global Citizens’ Assembly on Genome Editing to get to the heart of these issues. It presents a concrete response to the urgent ethical and regulatory questions in relation to genome-editing technologies. The Global Citizens’ Assembly will bring together at least twenty-four participants representing different countries across all continents most affected by genome editing. Participants will take part in five days of deliberations about the global principles of governance of genome editing. They will have access to eminent scientists at the forefront of genomic research, ethicists, and other stakeholders. They will have the ear of decision-makers at national and global levels. The recommendations of the global citizens assembly will be turned over to the Secretary General of the United Nations, the Director-Generals of the World Health Organization and Food and Agriculture Organization, to relevant ministers and government departments throughout the world as well as to major relevant stakeholders from the Industry, Civil Society and Science and research.