Collaborations between developing and developed countries in advancing biomedical population genetics, neglected diseases and bioprospecting R&D: developing policy and practice guidelines for going forward in 21st century. (360G-Wellcome-072602_Z_03_B)
Studentship in Biomedical Ethics Project title: Collaborations between developing and developed countries in advancing biomedical population genetics, neglected diseases and bioprospecting R&D: Developing Policy and Practice Guidelines for Going Forward in the 21st century. The project will examine the structure, organisation and interplay of key ethical, socio-economic, health-policy and commercial concerns regarding the establishment of sustainable support systems (policies, institutions, R&D and commercial practices) for biomedical collaborations between developing and developed countries, framed around a need to align participant incentives- within a system that promotes and ensures ethical practice. It will elucidate the benefits and shortcomings of current practice; investigate the interplay between trade-offs and competing tensions facing collaborative efforts (e.g. exploration versus exploitation, short vs long-termism, trust vs vigilance, competition vs cooperation, opportunism vs altruism, planning vs emergence); highlight implications; and draw novel collaboration performance measures and improved guidelines for addressing a series of collaboration -specific issues in a multidisciplinary and integrated manner. These include access to genetic resources, benefit sharing and ethical concerns, IPR protection, technology transfer and capacity building in developing countries. Research will build on theoretical and empirical evidence from the fields of global health, bioethics, alliance theory, innovation management and development studies. The project will employ a multiple methodology approach, combining evidence from comparative case studies of collaborative R&D efforts at biomedical centres in the developing world (e.g. at sponsor institutions: Africa Centre for Health and Population Studies and Wellcome Trust's South East Asia Overseas Unit), interview data, company profiles, descriptive statistics, bibliometric and patent data. Empirical evidence for best-practice transfer will draw on contextual insight from the fields of population genetics, neglected diseases and bioprospecting. Such theoretical and practical advancements are pivotal towards spring-boarding cross-national collaboration practice in the biomedical sector, and ensuring that both "First" and "Third World" parties offer each other better credibility, stronger contributions and more equitable benefit distributions in turn.
£8,976 22 May 2006