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Tell the World – Exposing how China is creating the world’s largest prison – ABC Four Corners (July 2019)0

Posted by Admin in on July 16, 2019
 

On 15th July, ABC 4Corners ran a documentary examining develop the use of AI to profile and track activities non-Han populations in China. One Australian commentator argued that, in providing technical assistance, Australian universities were being ‘complicit in the human rights abuses’ (Assoc Prof James Leibold, La Trobe University). UTS told 4Corners that it was reviewing its relationships with a Chinese state-owned military tech company while Curtin is reviewing its research approval procedures.

Other universities may want to consider the mechanisms that they have that allow them to explore the ethics of the end use of technology that they develop and the degree to which it might be intended for or repurposed for the use of state security or military purposes. The biomedical literature has explored the dangers of dual use, but the 4Corners investigation pointed to problems that are much easier to anticipate, in this case work contracted directly with Australian university partners by Chinese state enterprises with military connections.

ASSOC PROF. JAMES LEIBOLD, ethnic policy in China, La Trobe University: I think… universities here in Australia that have connections with any Party State company, particularly in the military or security sector, needs to end those contracts, and to pull out of those collaborative arrangement. I mean, essentially by doing that, we’re being complicit in the human rights abuses that are occurring in Xinjiang and in China more widely.

EXCERPT FROM THE ITEM

“People started to literally disappear, communities were being emptied of adult men and women.” China researcher

It’s a remote corner of the world, but what is taking place there is nothing short of breathtaking.

“My older brother, younger brothers and two younger sisters, five siblings were all taken by… masked police. Heavily armed Special Forces police raided their home and taken (sic) them by covering their face and shackling them in front of the kids.” Australian Uyghur

Xinjiang province is a vast area of deserts and mountains where the ancient Silk Road once ran. Today its Uyghur population is being systematically rounded up with estimates of as many as a million citizens being held in detention.

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(Includes audio and transcript)

Misreporting the science of lab-made organs is unethical, even dangerous – The Conversation (Cathal D. O’Connell | May 2019)0

Posted by Admin in on June 25, 2019
 

I work in the field of bioprinting, where the aim is to build biological tissues by printing living cells into 3D structures.

Last month I found my Facebook news feed plastered with an amazing story about “the first 3D printed heart using a patient’s own cells”. A video showed a beautiful, healthy-looking heart apparently materialising inside a vat of pinkish liquid.

Big news. According to an impact tracking algorithm, the story has been picked up by 145 news outlets, tweeted 2,390 times to 3.8 million followers (as of May 27, 2019). Articles on Facebook have at least 13,000 shares, and videos about the story have been viewed well over 3 million times.

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(US) FDA says HCMC doctors kept ketamine study going after pledging to stop – Star Tribune (Andy Mannix | June 2019)0

Posted by Admin in on June 23, 2019
 

Medical staff at HCMC continued to sedate people with ketamine and collect data for a study for months after the hospital’s leadership told elected officials they had voluntarily halted the research in response to questions over ethics and patient safety.

New inspection reports from federal regulators also say that doctors involved in the research failed to disclose incidents of patients suffering serious medical complications — such as trouble breathing or high blood pressure — to the committee in charge of keeping study subjects safe.

HCMC officials have already responded to the reports, vigorously rebutting many of the findings.

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(US) UCSD has not told women with HIV of data breach, despite researchers’ pleas – inewsource (Jill Castellano & Brad Racino | May 2019)0

Posted by Admin in on June 22, 2019
 

University of California San Diego officials stonewalled attempts to notify women in an HIV research study that their confidential data was breached more than seven months ago, an inewsource investigation has found.

The commentary sidebar on the inewsource website sums up well why this is a big deal. If the story is correct, the breach is serious enough, but the failure to warn the women was a complete betrayal of trust.

UCSD researchers conducting the EmPower Women study told university officials in October that participants’ names, audio-taped conversations and other sensitive materials were made accessible to everyone working at Christie’s Place, a San Diego nonprofit supporting women with HIV and AIDS. They called the situation “very serious” and said the women affected are “within one of the most vulnerable and marginalized populations.”
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But internal emails, reports and meeting minutes chronicle months of communication between lead researcher Jamila Stockman — who pushed for telling two dozen women enrolled in the project about the breach — and UCSD officials concerned about the consequences.
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