Research in Bioethics

Research in bioethics covers a broad spectrum of questions, topics, and issues encompassing both highly abstract philosophical questions such as the nature of morality, the meaning of “the good”, and how to understand notions such as “justice”, “duty” and “harm” on the one hand, while addressing very concrete policy issues and concerns such as the ethics of funding expensive and innovative reproductive technologies, an individual’s right to physician-assisted death, genetic discrimination, etc., on the other. Research methods in bioethics are in turn diverse including both formal approaches of traditional philosophical analysis, methods of policy review and critique, as well as both qualitative and quantitative approaches to empirical research.

Members of our bioethics team have diverse interests and backgrounds and engage in a variety of research projects both as single investigators and as members of larger national and international research teams. We have been successful in acquiring research funding from provincial (NL Centre for Applied Health Research), regional (ACOA) and national research sponsors (CIHR, SSHRC, Genome Canada). As members of the Division of Community Health and Humanities we collaborate regularly with researchers in epidemiology, health policy, biostatistics, health economics and the social sciences within the division, and with basic scientists and clinicians within the Faculty of Medicine and Eastern Health more generally. Several members of our team have cross appointments with other divisions and departments in the University (e.g. philosophy, nursing), further enhancing our research activities. (See the individual profiles of bioethics faculty members for details about on-going research interests and publications).