AABHL encourages open discussion and debate on a range of bioethical issues, providing a place where people can ask difficult questions about ideas and practices associated with health and illness, biomedical research and human values.

AABHL seeks to foster a distinctive Australasian voice in bioethics, and provide opportunities for international engagement through its membership, journal and conferences.

Members come from all the contributing humanities, social science and science disciplines that make up contemporary bioethics.

Many members have cross-disciplinary interests and all seek to broaden the dialogues in which all members of the wider community ultimately have an interest.

AABHL is a supportive, creative and challenging community that provides a rich source of continuing academic refreshment and renewal.

The aims of the AABHL are:

  • to promote the study of bioethics in Australasia;
  • to provide a public forum for debate and discussion of bioethics;
  • to promote awareness of bioethics and bioethical issues in the community among all those involved in health care and related disciplines.

The AABHL constitution is available here.

The association has run national conferences since its inception. Proceedings have been published and it is intended to have the proceedings of recent Conferences placed on the Web.

AABHL Code of Conduct

In order to meet our objectives of open discussion and debate on sometimes sensitive, emerging, and/or controversial topics, AABHL members adhere to a Code of Conduct, promoting fair and respectful engagement with all members at all times.

The AABHL Code of Conduct is available here.


AABHL Constitution revised 2019

The AABHL Constitution was revised in 2019 and a copy of it can be found here.

AABHL 2018 Conference Statement

The AABHL 2018 Conference Statement was drafted at the 2018 Conference to express concerns about the health and well-being of asylum seekers and refugees currently held in immigration detention, or stranded offshore after the closure of detention centres on Manus Island and Naura. The Statement can be viewed here.

AABHL Constitutional Review 2018/19 Working Party Membership

In response to matters arising at AABHL’s last AGM, a Constitutional Review Working Party was convened to review our existing procedures in order to bring them up to date and to address gaps in current policies and gaps in the Constitution itself.

The members of that working party are listed below:

  • Rachel A. Ankeny, University of Adelaide (Chair)
  • Cynthia Forlini, Deakin University
  • Wendy Lipworth, University of Sydney
  • Tamra Lysaght, National University of Singapore.
  • Paul MacNeill, University of Sydney (Stepped down: 7 September 2019)
  • Pat McConville, Monash University
  • Malcolm Parker, University of Queensland
  • Cameron Stewart, University of Sydney
  • Jacqueline Savard, Deakin University

Sponsorship and Promotions

Endorsed by the Committee, March 2011

AABHL is an association that commenced operations in 2010, from the amalgamation of the Australasian Bioethics Association and the Australian and NZ Institute of Health, Law and Ethics. Its members come from universities, the health and legal professions, the bodies of students in training for careers in these professions and/or the academy, and from other walks of life involved in the ethical and legal consideration of health care and the life sciences. AABHL is the most prominent professional association in Australasia in these areas.

AABHL’s primary aim is to foster debate, discussion, inquiry and research into the many issues that arise within this important sphere of human activity, and between the various disciplines that inform these debates and concerns, not being limited to ethics and law. The annual conference, together with state-based activities, provide a focus for these intellectual and educational activities.

Given this primary focus, AABHL does not formulate or support particular policy positions on any of the issues that are explored in these settings. Hence it does not accept sponsorship from, or help promote any organisation that argues or agitates for, specific policy positions or changes. This does not preclude AABHL from accepting financial or in kind support from individuals or organisations whose clear motivation is to help sustain the collegiate activities of the association. This allows an organisation to promote its services (eg a law firm financially supporting a speaker, but simultaneously advertising its services via a banner) but not a particular bioethical or legal view.