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Deutsches Institut für Japanstudien

Stefan Roesner

Japanese Studies, Sociology
Since September 2010
(PhD Students, September 1, 2010 - August 31, 2011)
  • Bioethical debate on Brain Death and Organ Transplantation
  • Organ Donation

Research Project:

Organ donation in public discourse.

Today, most organ transplants are relatively safe, routine procedures, and transplantation is considered to be the best treatment option for many patients suffering from organ failure. In this context the mass media is playing an important role in shaping the public discourse on organ donation. Particularly people who are not faced with the issue of organ transplantation in everyday life (for they are not directly affected) base their attitudes towards that subject almost exclusively on information received from the mass media. People herby often tend to adapt their views on controversial topics to the tenor created in the media, because they assume it to be widespread in society.

Thirteen years after the organ transplant law in Japan and Germany has come into enforcement, the topic is enduring timeliness. The question is whether people only pretend to agree to organ donation if they were asked hypothetically or if they really do. To draw a comparison between the mere declaration of intend and the donation, this research focuses on media coverage on organ donation and survey results in Japan and Germany.