Bioethics governance

Novo Nordisk faces a number of complex bioethical issues and more than 100 Novo Nordisk employees are dedicated to addressing our bioethical dilemmas. This team (a virtual cross-functional set-up) prepares and suggests new initiatives, develops and implements new policies and guidelines, and supervises the company's handling of bioethical issues worldwide.

The Novo Nordisk Way of Management, our basic management principles, includes a Bioethics Policy with general operational guidelines. This is consistent with our objective: to strive to be economically viable, socially responsible, and environmentally sound (The Triple Bottom Line) by considering each of these elements when making business decisions.

Novo Nordisk bioethics policy

In Novo Nordisk we will continuously improve our bioethical performance.

This means that we will:

  • Promote bioethical awareness throughout the company
  • Establish and ensure high ethical standards for:
    • experiments on live animals
    • clinical trials and use of human material
    • gene technology
    • our external partners, contract research organisations and suppliers, and monitor their performance
  • Engage in stakeholder dialogue and partnerships, and report on our performance
  • Live up to the spirit, values and principles and content of relevant conventions, laws and requirements

Global standards

Ethical issues are universal and have no borders. We, therefore, strive for global standards and have global requirements on our business partners and suppliers. We also require external contractors performing research on behalf of Novo Nordisk to comply with the same standards that apply across our own organisation when performing research.

To ensure global and high ethical standards we assess our contractors prior to partnering, and we monitor, audit, and educate them if needed. We have developed working processes and various documents such as standard operational procedures SOPs), positionsguiding principles and guidelines which must always be adhered to, no matter where in the world we and our external contractors operate.