Center for Bioethics Papers

Document Type

Book Chapter

Date of this Version

August 2001


In the ethics of human subjects research, protectionism is the doctrine that human beings should be protected from the risks of participation in research. Evidently, unless one believes that scientific progress always trumps the interests of human subjects, protectionism per se is hardly a controversial view. Controversy enters mainly when several nuanced interpretations of the doctrine are distinguished with an eye toward its application to actual research projects.


Reprinted from Ethical and Policy Issues in Research Involving Human Subjects, National Bioethics Advisory Commission, Volume 2, August 2001, pages I3-I21.

NOTE: At the time of publication, author Jonathan D. Moreno was affiliated with the University of Virginia. Currently March 2007, he is a faculty member in the Department of Bioengineering at the University of Pennsylvania.



Date Posted: 19 March 2007