This collection of articles grew out of the symposium "Biotechnology and Ethics:"Scientific Liberty and Moral Responsibility. The symposium, held in November 1993, was organized and sponsored by the Centre for Applied Ethics at Hong Kong Baptist University in cooperation with the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology and the Goethe Institut. The sponsorship of the symposium through these institutions as well as the financial support provided by the Centre for Applied Ethics towards the publication of the present volume are highly appreciated and gratefully acknowledged.
The symposium and this volume are significant for a number of reasons. First, this was the first conference in Hong Kong which explored the ethical issues arising from the vitally important and increasingly complex area of biotechnology. Second, the participants in the symposium and contributors to this volume represent both multiple cultures ( Hong Kong, China, Japan, England, the United States, and Germany) as well as multiple disciplines (biology, chemistry, health sciences, economics, engineering, philosophy, law, and theology).
While this volume does provide a great deal of information about biotechnology, its more appropriate use is as a stimulus for discussion. Towards this end the articles often raise more questions than they answer. The complexity of the ethical dilemmas posed by biotechnology is such that we are still trying to identify what questions should be asked. The volume recognizes that the first step in making the types of ethical decisions which are increasingly demanded of us is searching for the right questions. The articles vary greatly in both length and orientation. This will make it useable by a wide range of groups — from students in the classroom, to professionals