Fifth Workshop on Science and Values in Radiological Protection Decision Making

Four successful workshops on Science and Values in Radiological Protection Decision Making have thus far been held in 2008 (Finland), 2009 (France), 2012 (Japan) and 2015 (Russia). To continue advancing the integration of new scientific radiological protection and technological developments, and evolving the understanding of social considerations into decision making in circumstances involving the radiological aspects, the NEA Committee on Radiological Protection and Public Health (CRPPH) was prompted to organise the Fifth Workshop on Science and Values in Radiological Protection Decision Making.

The fifth workshop – hosted by the University of Milan – addressed the complexity and multi-faceted nature of radiological protection situations (e.g. uncertainty and variability of scientific-social-ethical aspects, etc.) as inputs to radiological protection decision making and approaches to decision implementation.

The workshop not only addressed issues that have been particularly evident in a post-accident context, but also those that were commonly seen as aspects of importance in other radiological protection circumstances. It focused on ethics and uncertainty in the context of the three following key topics:

  • Topic A : Challenges of managing uncertainty of low-dose effects in chronic public exposure situations
  • Topic B : Medical screening: RP ethics and uncertainties in justification and implementation
  • Topic C : Ethics of radiological protection in occupational exposure situations

Aspects of justification, trust and acceptability were also addressed. In addition to this, the workshop's Italian hosts presented national radiological protection issues and research.

Workshop objectives

The workshop aimed at understanding how the science and values aspects of the three topics might influence the evolution of the system of radiological protection, and how these aspects should be included and transparently articulated in radiological protection decision making.

The workshop was be built around parallel breakout session discussions and focused more on the values aspects of radiological protection decision making than on the science aspects.

Target audience

Radiological protection experts involved in decision making and stakeholder involvement, and social scientists working on radiological protection-related understanding and decision-making issues were part of the target audience.

Workshop format

The workshop was held over 2.5 days. It included invited speakers along with discussions focusing on the three workshop topics listed above. The science and values aspects of each topic were presented in a plenary, followed by three parallel breakout sessions for a detailed discussion of each of the three key topics.

When registering for the workshop, participants were asked to select their preferences for the three key topics and the workshop organisers assigned balanced groups to each breakout session. Although all formal presentations were be by invitation, participants could bring short presentations (3-5 minutes maximum) to succinctly present their views and stimulate the discussion during breakout sessions.

Working language

The workshop was conducted in English.


The workshop was held at:

University of Milan
Palazzo Greppi, Sala Napoleonica
Via Sant'Antonio 12

Social events

18 September (PM)      MITO Orchestra concert

20 September                Guided walking tour of the city centre of Milan.
Contact information

Dr Ted Lazo and Ms Laurène Henry
Division of Radiological Protection and Human Aspects of Nuclear Safety
OECD Nuclear Energy Agency
46, quai Alphonse le Gallo
92100 Boulogne-Billancourt
Tel.: +33 1 45 24 11 43