Skip to main content

Global Forum on Bioethics in Research: Ethics of AI in global health research


The Global Forum on Bioethics in Research (GFBR) will hold a two-day meeting in Cape Town, South Africa in November 2022 (tentative) on the theme Ethics of artificial intelligence in global health research. Awards are available for successful applicants from LMICs to cover the cost of their travel, accommodation and single-entry visa

Meeting summary

Artificial intelligence (AI) is increasingly being used in global health research but frameworks, policy and best practice for the ethical review and oversight of AI-enabled studies is currently lacking. The Forum will discuss how traditional research ethics regulatory frameworks have responded to the rapid advances in AI technology, and what changes are required, including to the role and responsibility of research ethics committees (RECs). It will explore the ethical challenges such as bias, privacy, data provenance and ownership, along with the need for transparency, accountability and engagement during the design and use of AI in global health research. To date, these discussions have predominantly taken place in high-income countries, and low- and middle-income country (LMIC) perspectives have been underrepresented. The Forum will consider the LMIC context where AI has the potential to address critical skills shortages and improve access to care, but where the ethical challenges are made harder due to existing disparities in infrastructure, knowledge and capacity. The Forum will take a multidisciplinary approach to explore how AI technology is being designed and used in health research, reflecting the range of actors involved in this space and the importance of computer scientists and technologists who apply AI for health to understand research ethics frameworks and considerations. 

As part of the upcoming meeting, the GFBR is seeking case studies that bring attention to key ethical issues that have emerged regarding the use of AI in health research in LMIC settings and proposals to participate in a session on governance issuesThe GFBR is also seeking participants to attend the meeting, with places awarded on a competitive basis.  

Full details on how to apply are available on the GFBR website and the background paper provides further details on the meeting theme. 

The deadline for applications is 17.00 CET on 17 June 2022.  

Social Media Share