European bioethics institutionalisation in theory and practice
Th e starting point of this paper is the role the institutions as social facts, have in modern
(European) society, as well as the exploring of the meaning and purpose of the institutionalisation
process. Institutionalisation is seen as the process understood as establishing diff erent
normative and organisational institutions.
Our interest is also concentrated upon following the line of (European) bioethics. Since V.
R. Potter used this term in 1970/71 for the fi rst time, bioethics has rapidly conquered various
levels of the American society, becoming well known and even better present in a series
of institutions. At the same time, almost contrary to the American example and experience,
European continent has for a long time been resistant to the term of bioethics, as well as to
the very idea of such discipline. Until recently, European orientation and devotion to the
traditional terms (medical ethics, biomedical ethics, physician’s deontology, etc.) and the misconception
of (American) bioethics, have been main reasons for the lack of or poor bioethical
institutionalisation in European countries and the Union.
Being discovered in 1997 and promoted since 2007, the work of Fritz Jahr has been spreading
new lights onto the originality and authenticity of bioethical ideas in Europe, off ering
remarks regarding the Bioethical Imperative and institutions, as well as possibilities os European
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