Body Worlds: Pulse

Ethics Advisory Committee

In 2004, prior to introducing Gunther von Hagens' BODY WORLDS to American audiences, and updated in 2017*, the California Science Center instituted a rigorous review process to assess the educational merit and ethical nature of the exhibition. To advise the Science Center, an Ethics Advisory Committee was established that worked in collaboration with Dr. Hans Martin Sass, an internationally renowned bioethicist, who traveled to Germany to review the exhibit and body donor documentation. This review was based on our concern for human and civil rights, our high respect for personal choice, and our understanding that sensitive issues such as the public display of plastinated human bodies and organs will cause cultural and individual debates. Such debates however, are an essential part of a scientifically literate society.

Based on their review and the Science Center evaluation, we hosted BODY WORLDS 1 in 2004, BODY WORLDS 2 in 2005, BODY WORLDS 3 in 2008, and now BODY WORLDS: Pulse in 2017. The consensus of the Committee was that the exhibitions have considerable educational value and that:

  • all bodies were donated with full and informed consent of the donors;
  • source of the bodies and matching death certificates were verified;
  • donors agreed to public display for educational purposes.

We are pleased to welcome you to the West Coast premiere of the latest exhibition from inventor Dr. Gunther von Hagens - BODY WORLDS: Pulse. In making this exhibition possible, we are grateful for the dedication and sage advice of those serving and who have served on the Ethics Advisory Committee:

  • Father Richard Benson, CM., Ph.D., St. John¹s Seminar, Archdiocese of Los Angeles
  • David C. Blake, Ph.D., J.D., Cedars-Sinai Medical Center
  • Rabbi Morley Feinstein, University Synagogue
  • Reverend Leonard Jackson, Los Angeles Council of Churches
  • Stanley Korenman, M.D., Professor, UCLA Medical Center
  • Reverend Cecil L. Murray, School of Religion, USC
  • Hans-Martin Sass, Ph.D., Kennedy Institute of Ethics, Georgetown University,
  • Mark Ridley-Thomas, Member of the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors  
  • Tom Weinberger, Bioethics Center, Cedars-Sinai Medical Center
  • Neil Wenger, M.D., Professor, UCLA Healthcare Ethics Center
  • Frances M. Wiley, R.N., M.N., UCLA School of Medicine (retired)

* Summary of Ethical Review Update