Information related to research interest "Biomedical Ethics"

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Supervisors with this research interest

  • Faculty of Theology and Philosophy

  • School of Theology

  • Dr David Kirchhoffer

    David G. Kirchhoffer is the Director of the Queensland Bioethics Centre, a collaboration between the Archdiocese of Brisbane and the Faculty of Theology and Philosophy at ACU. He is also a member of ACU's Institute for Religion and Critical Inquiry.

    Dr Kirchhoffer grew up in Johannesburg, South Africa,where he studied biology and psychology at the University of the Witwatersrand, and theology at St Augustine College of South Africa. He did his doctoral studies at the Katholieke Universiteit Leuven in Belgium. After working as a post-doctoral researcher at the Centre for Biomedical Ethics and Law at the KU Leuven, he took up a permanent post at the Banyo campus of the Australian Catholic University(Brisbane).

    He is Senior Research Associate of the Department of Philosophy at the University of Johannesburg, and in 2015 was a Senior Visiting Fellow at the National University of Singapore's Centre for Biomedical Ethics.

    David Kirchhoffer's primary research focus is on the meaning and relevance of the concept of human dignity, and contemporary understandings of the human person in contemporary ethics, in the fields of biomedical ethics, business ethics, social ethics, and personal ethics.

    His most recent book, "Human Dignity in Contemporary Ethics," develops a holistic and relevant understanding of human dignity for ethics today. Whilst critics of the concept of human dignity call for its dismissal, and many of its defenders rehearse the same old arguments, this book offers an alternative set of methodological assumptions on which to base a revitalized and practical understanding of human dignity, which at the same time overcomes the challenges that the concept currently faces. The Component Dimensions of Human Dignity model enables human dignity to serve both as a descriptive category that explains moral choices, and as a normative criterion that helps to evaluate moral behaviour. A consideration of two cases--violent crime and physician-assisted suicide--demonstrates how the model offers a way to avoid the pitfalls of both moralism and moral relativism, while still leaving space for relativity in ethics. By using an approach that should be acceptable to both religious and secular perspectives alike, this book offers a unique way out of the 'dignity talk' that currently plagues ethics.

    Phone : +61 (0) 7 3623 7592 (Brisbane) Email :


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