Please note that the name has changed to Asian Bioethics Association. Other details are similar, and membership fees. See the draft constitution.
Update on ABA and Invitation for Membership

Eubios Journal of Asian and International Bioethics 6 (1996), 156-7.

- Hyakudai Sakamoto, Ph.D., President
The East Asian Association for Bioethics
c/o University Research Center,Nihon University
4-8-24 Kudan-Minami, Chiyoda-ku,Tokyo 102, JAPAN
Phone: Int+81-3-5275-8137
Fax: Int+81-3-5275-8326
Telex: NICHIDAI J29496
Dear Colleagues and Friends,

Almost a year has elapsed since the First East Asian Conference on Bioethics (EACB'95) was held in Beijing last year. We are grateful for launching the East Asian Association of Bioethics. Since then we have been trying to start our group activities as promptly as possible. And, now at last, we have reached the stage of calling for membership. The membership is open to any qualified individual or institution.

You are cordially invited to fill out the enclosed membership application form and send it back to our office. Please circulate this invitation among your colleagues and friends who might share the same academic interests with us. Taking into account the unfortunate income differentials among the people of different countries, we tentatively lay down a rule of our annual membership fees as follows:

If your annual income is: your annual fee will be:
less than US$5,000 ---> US$5
less than US$10,000 ---> US$10
less than US$50,000 ---> US$40
more than US$50,000 ---> US$60
Institutional membership---> US$200 and up

We will notify those who register later how to remit your membership fee. At present we want to know how many members we can expect to have.

We are also preparing to issue a newsletter and holding the Second East Asian Conference in Kobe in November, 1997 (see previous pages), and trying to secure some additional funds for these activities. We appreciate your help and advice. Looking forward to having as many members as we can we remain,
Respectfully submitted,
Hyakudai Sakamoto
and on behalf of:

Prof. Qiu Renzong
Institute of Philosophy
Chinese Academy of Social Sciences
5 Jianguomennei Avenue
Beijing 100732 China
Tel/Fax: Int+86-10-5122025
Secretary General:
Prof. Takashi Fujimoto
Faculty of Letters, Chiba University
1-33 Yyoicho, Inage-ku
Chiba 263 Japan
Tel: Int+81-463-72-5910
Fax: Int+81-463-72-4496
Prof. Song Sang-Yong
Dept. of the History of Science, Hallym University
303 Kungjon Villa
134-9 Kugi-Dong, Chongno-gu
Seoul 110-011 Korea
Tel: Int+82-2-379-4125

Membership Application Form

Family name, First name Middle name; *On the membership form please write both Chinese characters and alphabet if applicable. Note: Only the names, addresses, and research interests will be printed in the membership list. Other information will be confidential. Note the introduction and some of the papers from the First Congress, and all abstracts have been published in EJAIB (check the on-line back issues.


Age (Optional):

Country of Residence:

Professional status:

Highest Academic degree earned:

Your field of academic specialization:

*The institution you are affiliated with:

*Address of your institution:

*Your mailing address:


The nearest airport you usually start traveling from (if you are non-Japanese):

A Summary of the background of Bioethics in Japan with China

- Hyakudai Sakamoto

To give a brief idea on the History of Bioethical Studies in Japan, and the establishment of the East Asian Association of Bioethics, I list some of the events which I believe to be key to this evolution: In 1973, Japanese Translation of V.R.Potter's Bioethics: A Bridge to the Future. In 1984, Ministry of Health and Welfare organized a "Conference on Life and Ethics". In 1985, Ministry of Education set up Study Group of "Bioethics", when the word was first used in an organization in Japan. Sakamoto was the head of the study group and it continued for 3 years. In 1986, Japanese Medical Society set up a Roundtable conference on Bioethics chaired by Prof. Ichiro Kato. In 1988, "The Japanese Association for Bioethics" was established on a interdisciplinary basis. Sakamoto was the organizer, and the first founding Chairman.

Through this pre-history, a US-type of bioethics, as well as the US-type legal system were mainly introduced. However, later on, differences about the bioethical circumstances surrounding medical and environmental issues between Japan and US were strongly recognized among Japanese people, and therefore, the universality of US-type of bioethics was doubted. Just at this period the academic contact between Japan and China in the field of bioethics started.

In 1992, the first China-Japan Medical conference was held in Beijing. In the Conference, the session on "Medical Ethics" was set up, organized and chaired by Sakamoto (Japan) and Qiu Renzong (China). Here, Sakamoto and Qiu Renzong agreed to work to establishment of the East Asian Association in 1995, in Beijing. There have been other individual contacts made between Japanese and Chinese bioethicists.

In 1995, The East Asian Conference on Bioethics (EACB'95) was held in Beijing, and the East Asian Association for Bioethics was founded, and the abstracts have all been published in EJAIB 6 (1996). Sakamoto was nominated as President of the Association. In 1997, The Second Congress of the EAAB is scheduled to be held in Kobe City, the UNESCO Asian Bioethics Conference, 4-8 November, as announced here.

Some of the initial aims for the EAAB reported by Sakamoto in 1995 included:

1) Bioethics should be based on the ethos, the way of thinking, and world view of the people of respective regions with the same cultural background. It is not necessarily universal.

2) The East Asian area is a typically such a region. It is divided into several countries now, but their underlying ethos's are similar with the common cultural background, i.e. the culture of the Chinese character.

3) There may be very significant differences and contrasts between the East Asian ethos and European or North American mentality with relation to ethics. Therefore we think we have to explore East Asian Bioethics, and develop our own bioethics.

4) However, any East Asian Bioethics must be globally internationalized, fronting the new, and globally common science and technology, as well as social development toward the post modern age. East Asian Bioethics should pursue harmony with other possible bioethics, especially, with the currently dominant American and European bioethics.

With this in mind we would like to seek to continue this debate, and call for more papers and letters to be submitted to EJAIB. We will welcome all to come to Japan in November 1997.

Go to EJAIB November 1996
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