Policy Design for Human Embryo Research in Canada

Document Type

Book Chapter

Publication Date



Embryo Research, Stem Cell Research, Policy Development, Canada, Bioethics


In Canada, research involving human embryos is circumscribed by law and research guidelines. This chapter describes the development of these policy instruments over the past 20 years and analyses this history using a typology of modes of public consultation developed by Eric Montpetit. (2003) Over time, the degree to which the views of Canadian residents and citizens on human embryo research have been solicited as part of the policy-making process has diminished significantly. We expect this trend to continue given the presence of powerful interest groups and policy communities “speaking for” Canadians.