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Ethics and Society (ESC)

The Ethics and Society Committee records and studies the ethical, cultural and societal issues which emanate from research and practice in biometrics.


The mission of the Ethics and Society Committee is to monitor and advise on advances in biometrics and allied technologies that are rapidly evolving into more and more sophisticated technologies for augmented human recognition. The Ethics and Society Committee guiding idea is that the major problems that face biometrics are not only technological in nature, but also ethical, societal, and cultural. Biometrics innovation should be responsible. Responsible innovation in biometrics does not only concern sustainability, safety and health, but also values such as accountability, transparency, respect for privacy, for fundamental rights and civil liberties.

Terms of reference

The Ethics and Society Committee terms of reference are:

  • To investigate the main ethical and societal implications of next generation biometrics and large scale biometric applications
  • To promote responsible research and innovation on biometrics in Europe
  • To focus on international issues, notably to social and transcultural implications of the deployment of civil applications of biometrics in emerging and developing economies
  • To provide a forum for international conversation of ethics of biometrics and emerging identification technology
  • To recommend guidelines on ethical, cultural, and societal problems in training, education, research, and implementation of biometrics programs
  • To bring ethical issues to the attention of EAB members
  • To address the question of EAB's policy towards sponsorship and relationships with industry
  • To develop a curriculum focusing on ethics and society of biometrics

Work tools

  • If you want to make use of our work tools please register.

Membership and governance

  • All EAB members may apply for membership.
  • Chair and members will be appointed by the EAB Management Board for an initial period of two years and can be reappointed for another period of two years.
  • Non-committee members may be invited to participate in a meeting on an ad hoc basis in case their specific expertise is needed for that specific meeting.

Chairperson of the ESC:

  • Emilio Mordini MD, DPhil, Centre for Science, Society and Citizenship, Italy

Further information

For further information you can contact:
Email: esc-chair@eab.org