International Seminar with Prof. Michael M. Burgess

International Seminar at the University Medical Center Göttingen

Featured Thinker: Prof. Michael M. Burgess

The seminar led by PROF. MICHAEL M. BURGESS, UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH COLUMBIA (Canada) is directed at students and young researchers.

Topic: Collectivity in Bioethics. Ethical analysis of stakeholder and public engagement

Date and time: September 25, 2019, 3.00-6.30 p.m.

Venue: Department of Medical Ethics and History of Medicine, University Medical Center Göttingen, Humboldtalle 36, 37073 Göttingen

Cost: There are no participation fees, but application in advance is mandatory.

This seminar is an adjunct event to the annual conference of the German Academy of Medical ethics.

The individual is the typical moral agent in contemporary liberal bioethics. This focus is often considered a basic premise of liberal ethics and modern law. However, the spectrum of groups involved in our complex health care systems is very broad, i.e. the state, medical professions, associations of nurses, health care and the pharmaceutical industries, patient organizations, civil society groups, religious associations, or trade unions. The manner in which they represent individual as well as collective interests and contribute to political decisions in committees or political processes opens an entirely different normative field. Some of the central questions refer to how stakeholders and the general public can be engaged as well as which ethical concepts and normative theories are beneficial to or needed for collective representation, public engagement and participation.

Michael M. Burgess is a professor at the W. Maurice Young Centre for Applied Ethics and the Department of Medical Genetics at the University of British Columbia, Vancouver, Canada. His research focuses on science and technology policy and public engagement based on theories of deliberative democracy. Together with Kieran O’Doherty and other colleagues, he conducted public engagements on biobanks in BC, at the Mayo Clinic, and in Western Australia. Prof. Burgess proposes a deliberative design that has recently also been used for issues related to cancer drugs and cancer care, mandatory childhood vaccination policy, and the use of linked data sets for research (learning health system and big data).

Prof. Michael M. Burgess will also hold a keynote lecture at the Annual Conference of the German Academy of Ethics in Medicine (AEM), on September 27, 2019.

During the seminar, you will have the chance to discuss and reflect on the broad topic of collectivity in bioethics and health care on the basis of three texts by Prof. Burgess. We invite students and young researchers to read and discuss together with Prof. Burgess.

To apply for the Featured Thinker seminar, please send a short CV (max. 1/2 page) and three questions that you would like to discuss by September 10, 2019 to lorina.buhr(at)med.uni-goettingen(dot)de.

Please consider that the number of participants is limited to 20 participants. Attendance will be confirmed according to the ‘first come first serve’ principle.


Lorina Buhr, M.A.

Prof. Dr. Silke Schicktanz

University Medical Center Göttingen

Department of Medical Ethics and History of Medicine


Lorina Buhr, M.A.

Email: lorina.buhr(at)med.uni-goettingen(dot)de

Phone: (+49) 551-39 4185

Call for Participation (PDF)