Working Session: What Role for Government in Regulating Assisted Reproduction?
Thursday 29 July 2010, 8:45am - 10:15am
[All details yet to be confirmed.]
Topics: ART regulation and risks; eggs (compensation; lack of data; advertising and recruiting, especially on campuses); sex selection; surrogacy; impact of anonymous donor conception on kids; advocacy campaigns & strategies; commercialization of egg “donation” and surrogacy.
The Session: Why we believe public policy is needed; what it would look like; who are the key players supporting and opposing it; how do we avoid unwanted consequences; how do we build winning coalitions; what is to be done next?

Reproductive and genetic technologies are proliferating in a highly commercialized, market-driven environment. Some existing and proposed ART procedures involve health risks to women and children. Some - such as third-party egg provision and surrogacy, and high-tech sex and trait selective procedures - raise concerns both about health risks and about social justice and the prospect of a “new eugenics.”

Most participants in The Tarrytown Meetings acknowledge the need for some kind of U.S. public policy in this arena. But what exactly is the role for government? What models or provisions that have been proposed or implemented, including in other countries, are promising?

In the broader reproductive rights movement, skepticism about government regulation is widespread. Core concepts of “regulation” and “informed consent” have been distorted by highly politicized strategies to restrict abortion access. How can we work for effective and responsible public policy in assisted reproduction in a way that furthers reproductive justice values and does not impinge on abortion rights?


  • How can we affirm the disability rights critique of prenatal / pre-pregnancy selection and discourage the expansion of sex and trait selection techniques without strengthening efforts to restrict abortion?
  • Are risks to and exploitation of women for their eggs best prevented by limiting compensation?
  • How do we approach the commercialization of reproductive services (surrogacy) and of reproductive and other tissues (living kidney donors, markets in eggs)?


Washington Irving Room

Documents Related to This Session

Magdalina Gugucheva
Submitted by: Kathleen Sloan
CRG Report-Magdalina Gugucheva
Submitted by: Magdalina Gugucheva
CRG Report-Magdalina Gugucheva
Submitted by: Jeremy Gruber
Donor Sibling Registry
Submitted by: Wendy Kramer