Institute of Biomedical Ethics and History of Medicine

Welcome to the website of the Institute of Biomedical Ethics and History of Medicine (IBME) of the University of Zurich.

With an ever-growing range of medical and biotechnological possibilities offered to us, there is a need to critically reflect on past developments, current options and future visions in medicine and health care from an ethical and historical perspective. This is what our Institute is dedicated to.

The results of our research and analyses are not only made accessible in academic journals. We also see it as our task to foster public discourse and engage in policy-making. As a WHO Collaborating Center, the IBME is also concerned with health ethics issues at a global level.

Another core task of our team is teaching, mainly in the medical school. We aim to provide our students with the knowledge and skills they need as future physicians and health care professionals. We are also involved in continuous medical education and postgraduate training. Since 2009, the IBME hosts the medical track of the interfaculty PhD program “Biomedical Ethics and Law”.

Finally, we also offer advice when ethical questions arise at the University or the University Hospital and are regularly involved in the ethics review of research proposals.

At our Institute, we work as an interdisciplinary group at the interface of health care, science and society. The Center for Medical Humanities, a platform that was established at the IBME in 2014, provides space for an exchange on health care from broader perspectives from social sciences, humanities, and the arts.

We have received support for our work from various institutions, such as the Swiss National Science Foundation, the Swiss Academy of Medical Science, the Federal Office of Public Health, the European Commission and the European Science Foundation.

Don’t hesitate to contact us if you want to learn more about our work or support the mission of the IBME.

Prof. Dr. med. Dr. phil. Nikola Biller-Andorno