Bioethics and Law Observatory

The Observatory intends to promote and carry out training and dissemination initiatives in a multidisciplinary perspective, in collaboration with local bodies and institutions.

It is part of the national network "Per un diritto gentile in medicina" (For a gentle right in medicine) and proposes itself as a local Observatory on the level of training and Third Mission activities with the aim of monitoring the implementation and impact, in clinical practice and public policies, of laws and regulations on the protection of information and autonomy of individuals regarding choices on health, treatments and care, also considering the effects on health workers.
The reference in particular is to Law 219 of 2017 on informed consent and advance treatment dispositions, which provides how every person has the right to know his or her health conditions and to be informed in a complete, updated and comprehensible manner about the diagnosis, prognosis, benefits and risks of the indicated diagnostic tests and health treatments, as well as about the consequences of any refusal of health treatment and diagnostic tests and the renunciation thereof.


  • to promote the culture of the care relationship and informed choice;
  • to monitor clinical practice by intercepting the requests of health professionals;
  • to disseminate regulatory developments from an interdisciplinary and comparative perspective;
  • to contribute to the training of competent professional figures;
  • to provide advice in the field of health and social care.

In this sense, the Observatory's activities interact closely with those of the Policlinico S. Orsola-Malpighi and the Professional Associations of the Province of Bologna, starting with crucial issues such as the protection of privacy and informed consent and medical liability. The interaction with the above-mentioned bodies is, moreover, consolidated by years of joint work between professors and scholars in research areas such as criminal law, health law, philosophy of law, bioethics, moral philosophy, constitutional law and legal medicine.

Main scientific-disciplinary areas involved:

Criminal Law, Civil Law, Constitutional Law, Philosophy of Law and Bioethics, Legal Medicine, Health Law.


  • Training
    Transversal university training and continuous training of professionals and operators (doctors, nurses, social workers, lawyers, magistrates, etc.), as well as of citizens in general in this field, also through local bodies and organisations wishing to promote training courses; collaboration with other private (Foundations, professional associations) and public training bodies.
  • Communication
    The Observatory intends to promote public communication of the issues addressed by providing the public with access to and dissemination of scientific knowledge, up-to-date regulatory data and practical-operational difficulties. Public meetings open to the public will be organised to promote empowerment/engagement initiatives.
  • Third Mission
    It is planned to collaborate and develop contacts with the third sector realities operating in the health sector: scientific societies, bodies and institutions, associations in the establishment/operation of support and social action services (University, Ministry of Health, Region, Health Authorities) in order to strengthen the interaction between the territory and the university, National Bioethics Committee, local ethics committees and professional orders and associations.