The International Council of Human Duties, hereafter called ICHD, is an international non-governmental and non-profit making organization. It has been created five years ago following an idea of Nobel Prize Prof. Roger Sperry and of Prof. Rita Levi Montalcini. On the occasion of the Laurea ad Honorem conferred to Prof. Rita Levi Montalcini by the University of Trieste in 1991, she expressed her desire to formulate a Carta of Human Duties as necessary counterpart of the too much neglected Declaration of Human Rights. 
This project came true in 1993 with the foundation of the ICHD at the University of Trieste, and from that day on many scientists, scholars, Nobel Prizes and important Italian and foreign institutions work together for the support and diffusion of the Carta of Human Duties' message. The Council obtained in 1997 the "special status" of " non-governmental organization in special consultive status with the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) od the United Nations ".

The objective of ICHD shall be:

  • To promote international understanding of the concepts of the Trieste Declaration of Human Duties and to foster throughout the world the application of these concepts.
  • To enter into relations with the United Nations, its agencies and with national Governments for the implementation of the goals of ICHD, and to cooperate with non-governmental international, national and regional bodies whose aims are consonant with those of ICHD.
  • To encourage the adoption by the United Nations of a " Universal Declaration of Human Duties " with comparable stature to the " Universal Declaration of Human Rights ". To promote the establishment of a " Human Duties Day ".
  • To stimulate, design, co-ordinate and participate in the implementation of international programmes related to the concepts of the Trieste Declaration of Human Duties.
  • To arrange, promote and sponsor World Congresses of the ICHD and such other meetings as may be useful or desirable for the advancement of the purposes of the ICHD.
  • To encourage the formation of national associations for the dissemination of the information of the concepts of ICHD.
  • To actively uphold the principles of universality of the concepts of the Trieste Declaration of Human Duties.
The ICHD shall not engage in any actions of political nature.

A code of
of Shared 

Crucial problems concering humanking at the dawn of the 21st century urge the adoption of a different way of thinking and a different value system. The change must be as revolutionary as that which emerged after the Middle Ages. The new way of thinking must be centered on humans as an integral part of our planet, whose actions affect all living things. It is our plan to present and discuss these ideas through conferences, workshops and lectures, and in particolar to support women's networks, and other organizations, active in the spirit of this Declaration. Furthermore, we will seek the participation of the youger generations, which represent our greatest hope for improving the quality of life on earth.

Whereas the Declaration of Human Rights represents one of the great advances of the twentieth century, it failes to address Human Duties and Responsibilities as necessary counterparts of these Rights. Recognition of and respect for human rights demand the acceptance of specific duties, in order to assure an adeguate quality of life for all people and the persistence of a sustainable enviroment for future generations. We, founding members of the International Concil of Human Duties, consider a binding responsibility for ourselves, not only as human beings, but especially as scientists and educators, to carefully and explicity carry out these duties to the best of our ability, even if their enactment may run counter to estabilished policies generated by traditional sources of power and influence. We herewith invite all people concerned with these issues to join us in. 

A code of Ethics and of Shared Responsabilities


  1. respect human dignity as well as ethnic, cultural and religious diversity.
  2. work against racial injustice and all discrimination of women, and the abuse and exploitation of children.
  3. work for improvement in the quality of life of aged and disabled perrsons.
  4. respect human life and condemn the sale of human beings or parts of the living human body.
  5. support efforts to improve the life of people suffering from hunger, misery, disease and unemployment.
  6. promote effective voluntary family planning in order to regulate world population growth.
  7. support actions for an equitable distribution of world resources.
  8. avoid energy waste and work for reduction of the use of fossil fuels. Promote the use of inexhaustible energy sources, representing a minimum of environmental and health risks.
  9. protect nature from pollution and abuse, promote conservation of natural resources and the restoration of degraded environments.
  10. respect and preserve the genetic diversity of living organisms and promote constant scrutiny of the application of genetic technologies.
  11. promote improvement of urban and rural regions and support endeavours to eliminate the causes of environmental destruction and impoverishment which can lead to massive migrations of people and over-population in urban areas.
  12. work for mantenance of world peace, condemn war, terrorism and other hostile activities by calling for decrease military spending in all countries and restriction of the proliferation and dissemination of arms, in particular, weapons of mass destruction.
Prof. Louis Albou  FRANCE 
Dr. Enrico Alleva  ITALY 
Prof. Ilya Antoniou  BELGIUM 
Prof Giuseppe Franco Bassani  ITALY 
Prof. Baruj Benacerraf  USA 
Prof Andrè Berger  BELGIUM 
Prof. Paul Blau  AUSTRIA 
Prof Giacomo Borruso  ITALY 
Prof. Luca Cavalli Sfoza  USA 
Prof. Jean-Pierre Changeux  FRANCE 
Prof. Gustave Choquet  FRANCE 
Prof. George Coyne  USA 
Prof Emer Colleran  IRELAND 
Prof. Jean Dausset  FRANCE 
Prof. Benedetto de Bernard  ITALY 
Prof. Christian de Duve  BELGIUM 
Prof. Giampaolo de Ferra  ITALY 
Prof. Gianfranco Dioguardi  ITALY 
Prof. Johanna Dobereiner  BRAZIL 
Prof Manfred Eigen  GERMANY 
Prof. Erika Erdmann  CANADA 
Prof. Arturo Falaschi  ITALY 
Prof. Hanslurgen Fischbeck  GERMANY 
Dr. Joanne Fox-Preworski  USA 
Dr. Gabriele Gatti  REP. OF SAN MARINO 
Prof Francois Gros  FRANCE 
Dr. Marianne Grunberg-Manago  USA 
Prof. Antonio Guacci  ITALY 
Dr. Andrè Hamende  ITALY 
Prof. Goran Hèrmeren  SWEDEN 
Prof. H. F. Honigsberg  COLOMBLA 
Prof. David Hubel  USA 
Prof. Robert Huber  GERMANY 
Prof. Francois Jacob  FRANCE 
Prof. Joshua Jortner  ISRAEL 
Prof. Sergei Kapitza  RUSSIA 
Prof. Alex Keynan  ISRAEL 
Sir John Kendrew  UNITED KNGDOM 
Prof. Iba Kone  KENYA 
Prof Arthur Kornberg  USA 
Prof. P.G. Kostyuk  UKRAINE 
Prof le Hyok Kwon  SOUTH KOREA 
Mr Han Been Lee  SOUTH KOREA 
Prof Jean-Marie Lehn  FRANCE 
Prof. Sang Soo Lee  SOUTH KOREA 
Prof. Rita Levi Montalcini  ITALY 
Prof Andrè Lichnerowicz  FRANCE 
Prof Eleonora Masini  ITALY 
Dame Anne McLaren  UNITED KINGDOM 
Prof. Mambillikalathil G. K. Menon  INDLA 
Prof. Franco Modigliani  USA 
Prof. Robert Muller  COSTA RICA 
Dr. John Katunga Murhula  KENYA 
Sir Gustav Nossal  AUSTRALLA 
Prof. Michio Okamoto  JAPAN 
Prof. David Ottoson  SWEDEN 
Prof. Sergio Paoletti  ITALY 
Prof Jean-Claude Pecker  FRANCE 
Prof. Nestor Perl  ARGENTINA 
Dr. Moss F. Perutz  UNITED KINGDOM 
Prof. Fausto Pocar  ITALY 
Prof. Ilya Pngogine  BELGIUM 
Prof. Antonio Puente  USA 
Prof. Peter Raven  USA 
Prof. Carlo Rubbia  ITALY 
Prof. Giorgio Salvini  ITALY 
Prof. Michael Sela  ISRAEL 
Prof. Eric Shooter  USA 
Prof. Maxine F. Singer  USA 
Prof. Michel Sintzoff  BELGIUM 
Prof. Margaret Somerville  CANADA 
Mr Heitor Gurgulino de Souza  JAPAN 
Prof Roger Sperry  USA 
Prof Hartwig Spitzer  GERMANY 
Dr. Wassyla Tamzali  FRANCE 
Prof. Theodore Voneida  USA 
Prof. Patrick Wall  UNITED KINGDOM 
Prof. Victor Weisskopf  USA 
Prof. Thomas Weller  USA 
The Executive Board 
Prof. Rita Levi Montalcini  ITALY  President ICHD 
Prof. David Ottoson  SWEDEN  Vice-President ICHD 
Prof. Sergio Paoletti  ITALY  Secretary General ICHD 
Prof. Giacomo Borruso  ITALY  Treasurer ICHD 
Prof. Jean-Pierre Changeux  FRANCE 
Prof. Emer Colleran  IRELAND 
Dr. Joanne Fox-Przeworski  USA 
Prof. Theodore Voneida  USA 
Prof. Michael Sela  ISRAEL 
Prof. Benedetto de Bernard  ITALY  Founding member, 
Honorary Secretary General 
Prof. Arturo Falaschi  Dr. Iba Kone  KENIA 
Chairman  ITALY  Prof. Sang Soo Lee  SOUTH KOREA 
Prof. Rita Levi Montalcini  ITALY  Prof. André Lichnerowicz  FRANCE 
Sir Michael Atiyah  UNITED KINGDOM  Prof. Eleonora Masini  ITALY 
Prof. Giacomo Borruso  ITALY  Prof. Mambillikalathil  INDIA 
Prof. Benedetto de Bernard  USA  Govind Kumar Menon  AUSTRALIA 
Prof. Luca Cavalli Sforza  USA  Sir Gustav Nossal  JAPAN 
Prof. George V. Coyne, SJ.  USA  Prof. Michio Okamoto  ITALY 
Dr. Johanna Döbereiner  BRASIL  Prof. Sergio Paoletti  ITALY 
Prof. Manfred Eigen  GERMANY  Prof. Ilya Prigogine  BELGIUM 
Prof. Goran Hérmeren  SWEDEN  Prof. Peter Raven  USA 
Prof. François Jacob  FRANCE  Prof. Margaret Somerville  CANADA 
Prof. Sergei Kapitza  RUSSIA  Dr. Wassyla Tamzali  FRANCE 
Prof. Alex Keynan  ISRAEL 
Prof. Göran Hérmeren  SWEDEN 
Prof. Sergei Kapitza  RUSSIA 
Prof. Alex Keynan  ISRAEL 
Prof. Sergio Paoletti  ISRAEL 
Dr. Wassyla Tamzali  FRANCE 
Accademia Nazionale dei Lincei 
The African Academy of Sciences 
International Centre for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology - ICGEB 
The Israel Academy of Sciences and Humanities 
Italian National Research Council 
The Union of Concerned Scientists 
Third World Academy of Sciences - TWAS 
United Nations Environment Programme - UNEP 
The United Nations University 
Scuola Normale Superiore di Pisa 
Dr.Carla Savastano
Universita' degli Studi di Trieste
Piazzale Europa 1 - 34127 Trieste Italy
Ph. +39-040-6763002
Fax +39-040-571071
Telex 460865 UNIVTS