Journal and Book Club

A. The Book Club

We invite all researchers, including doctoral students, to read a book on ethical issues and moral philosophy, chapter by chapter, and to critically evaluate and revise it. At the end of the reading of the book, a meeting with the author would be arranged, either in person or virtually, or look at video interviews when she/he is no longer alive.

The conditions for participation are as follows:

1. Have an interest in the chosen book (all IBME members will be able to vote for this choice)

2. Commit to regular attendance: every other Thursday from 4:00 pm 5:00 pm.

3. Register with Corine, coordinator of the Journal and Book Club, in order to be added to the Microsoft team "Book Club" for any communication, and also to know more about the meeting accommodation (room, zoom link).

Program - Spring Semester 2022

Autonomy and Trust in Bioethics
Onora O'Neill,  Cambridge 2002 (online 2009)
Download the flyer (PDF, 207 KB)
Meeting dates:

every other Thursday 4 to 5 pm, in presence, hybrid or zoom depending on the situation. To get updated information, please register to Corine

February 24 Chapter 1 Gaining autonomy and losing trust?
March 10 Chapter 2 Autonomy, individuality, and consent
March 24 Chapter 3 “Reproductive autonomy “and new technologies
April 7 Chapter 4 Principled autonomy
May 5 Chapter 5 Principled autonomy and genetic technologies
May 19 Chapter 6 The quest for trustworthiness
June 2 Chapter 7 Trust and the limits of consent
June 16 Chapter 8 Trust and communication: the media and bioethics
June 30 Chapter 9 Cases application: e.g. Algorithms, Covid Choice of the next book

The book has been chosen by the current IBME organizing committee of the Book Club: Tobias Eichinger, Roberto Andorno, Jana Sedlakova, Katia Tikhomirova, Martin Gramc, Anna Westermeir, Tania Manriquez, and Corine Mouton Dorey (coordinator).


Past events:

Fall semester 2021

  • Beauchamp & Childress: Principles of Biomedical Ethics (8th edition)
  • Special Session on: Cathy O’Neil: Weapons of Math Destruction.

Spring semester 2021
Two books were critically discussed:

  • The case against perfection; Michael Sandel
  • The Section III of The Methods of Bioethics, John McMillan

Fall semester 2020
Hans Jonas: The imperative of Responsibility. In Search of an Ethics for the Technological Age.

Spring semester 2020
We have read the following two books and have met the authors. For those interested, we have the recordings of the meetings with the author.

  • Dien Ho: A philosopher goes to the doctor - February 19, to April 22
  • Oliver Bennett: Cultures of optimism. The institutional promotion of hope. From April 28

B. The Journal Club
The Journal Club aims to give PhD students and other researchers the possibility to meet once a month to present a recent article in the field of biomedical ethics, and critically evaluate it.

These meetings allow participants to keep up to date with the literature, to exchange views on current issues in the field, and to improve their critical appraisal skills. Presentations last 15-20 minutes and are followed by approx. 20 minutes of discussion. Presenters will summarize a paper and give their own critical appraisal. The paper will be sent to the other participants in the Journal Club two weeks before the presentation.

C. ECT credit

The Journal and Book Club counts as an elective module for the PhD Program BmEL. Participants will be entitled to 0.5 ECTS per semester.


a) Regular attendance

b) Presenting a publication / respectively a book chapter, or writing a critical feedback of the Journal and Book Club meetings at the end of the semester.

c) Enrollment on the “Modul Buchung” platform of UZH.

If you would like to participate, or if you need further information, please contact: