The purpose of Toi te Taiao: New Zealand’s Bioethics Council, is to:
- Enhance New Zealand’s understanding of the cultural, ethical and spiritual aspects of biotechnology.
- Ensure that the use of biotechnology has regard for New Zealanders’ values.
How We Work
We Are Independent
Toi te Taiao: the Bioethics Council:
- Is independent, free to explore critical issues in an open and participatory way.
- Can provide advice reflecting diverse views (the Council is not required to provide advice based on a consensus of opinion).
- Aims to gain moral authority in the community, based on respect for its advice.
We Advise The Government
The Government looks to the Bioethics Council for advice about New Zealanders’ ethical, cultural and spiritual views in relation to biotechnology.
This advice is not binding on the Government. However, because it is based on extensive dialogue with New Zealanders, the Government has indicated it will pay very close attention to the Council’s advice and / or recommendations.
We Set Our Own Work Programme
The Council meets once a month, and has established several working groups that meet separately to advance our work programme in specific areas. We will establish new working groups as the Council’s work programme expands.
We Use A Variety Of Information Sources
To help develop our advice, and incorporate the views of New Zealanders, the Council will:
- Draw on a wide range of sources, such as policy makers, scientists, philosophers, interest groups and academics.
- Encourage and engage in dialogue with communities.
Councillors will also draw on their personal networks and international contacts.