The Philosophical Bioethics Hub is supported through a grant from The Greenwall Foundation.





Philosophical Foundations

Covers the fundamentals of ethical theory and philosophical argumentation.


Includes 25 entries on various contemporary bioethical issues in public health, research ethics, clinical ethics, and decision-making, taken from the Greenwall Scholars Seminars.

Empirical Bioethics Foundations

Explores the relationship between normative and empirical inquiry in bioethics and practical considerations for normative research.

PB Book Club

A book club inspired by a philosophy reading group led by Dr. Jennifer Blumenthal-Barby


Philosophical Lectures

“Meaningfulness: A Third Dimension of the Good Life”

Lecture given at Youngstown State University by Susan Wolf, 2017

In this lecture, Susan Wolf critiques traditional accounts of the Good Life which emphasize only happiness and morality. In response, she lays out a “fulfillment view” which introduces meaning as a third requisite to the Good Life. Dr. Wolf’s account of meaning and fulfillment holds implications for how bioethicists conceive of wellbeing and our responsibilities surrounding wellbeing.

“Uniqueness, Intrinsic Value, and Reasons”

Lecture given at DePauw University by Gwen Bradford, 2016

In this lecture, Gwen Bradford explores the concept of uniqueness and its relation to intrinsic value. Her argument holds implications for how we ought to relate to bearers of value (e.g., historical artifacts, elements of nature, human beings) with regard to their uniqueness.

“Dying Alone: The Badness of Death”

Lecture given at Yale University by Shelly Kagan, 2008

In this lecture, Shelly Kagan explores several hypotheses which seek to explain what about dying (or being dead) is actually bad. In other words, what is the bad-making feature of death? Is it non-existence? Is it the deprivation of potential future experiences? Thinking well about these questions is critical when considering the permissibility of offering certain clinical interventions or providing aid in dying.

“For the Common Good: Philosophical Foundations of Research Ethics”

Lecture given virtually at Hong Kong University by Alex London, 2022

In this lecture, Alex London discusses ways of conducting ethical research involving human subjects and puts forward what he calls the Egalitarian Research Imperative which sees the role of biomedical research as “conducting research that closes knowledge gaps to enable health systems to secure basic interests of community members,” (timestamp 19:25) where the knowledge gaps represent uncertainties over how to safeguard health and make the best and most equitable use of scarce resources.

“Anger and Revolutionary Justice”

Lecture given at University of Chicago by Martha Nussbaum, 2015

In this lecture, Martha Nussbaum makes a series of claims about the nature of anger and its relation to retributivism and justice, arguing against the virtue or necessity of anger in enacting justice. Her argument has implications for how bioethical advocacy (be it clinical, environmental, etc.,) responds to injustice, both past and present.


NYU Philosophical Bioethics Workshop (sPRING 2023)

The New York University Center for Bioethics is pleased to invite submissions of abstracts for the 3rd Annual Philosophical Bioethics Workshop, to be held at NYU on Friday and Saturday, April 28-29, 2023.

They are seeking to showcase new work in philosophical bioethics, broadly understood. This includes (but is not limited to) neuroethics, environmental ethics, animal ethics, reproductive ethics, research ethics, ethics of AI, data ethics, public health ethics, gender and race in bioethics, and clinical ethics. The distinguished keynote speaker will be Professor Ruth Chang, University of Oxford. 

The submission deadline is February 5, 2023. To learn more, click here.

Philosophical bioethics workshop (fall 2022)

Ten philosopher bioethicists met for an annual workshop at Baylor College of Medicine over the course of several days to present papers, receive feedback, and discuss ideas.

Recent publications from our partners

“The End of Personhood”

Blumenthal-Barby, Jennifer. “The End of Personhood.” The American Journal of Bioethics, January 12, 2023, 1–10.

“Bioethics and the moral authority of experience”

Nelson, Ryan H., Bryanna Moore, Holly Fernandez Lynch, Miranda R. Waggoner, and Jennifer Blumenthal-Barby. 2022. “Bioethics and the Moral Authority of Experience.” The American Journal of Bioethics, October, 1–13.

“The Place of philosophy in bioethics today”

Blumenthal-Barby, Jennifer, Sean Aas, Dan Brudney, Jessica Flanigan, S. Matthew Liao, Alex London, Wayne Sumner, and Julian Savulescu. 2021. “The Place of Philosophy in Bioethics Today.” The American Journal of Bioethics, June, 1–12.

“Disability and the Definition of health”

Aas, Sean. 2022. “Disability and the Definition of Health.” In The Disability Bioethics Reader, by Joel Michael Reynolds and Christine Wieseler, 1st ed., 73–81. New York: Routledge.

“It’s time for a Black Bioethics”

Ray, Keisha Shantel. “It’s Time for a Black Bioethics.” The American Journal of Bioethics 21, no. 2 (February 1, 2021): 38–40.