PhD Opportunity in Biomedical Ethics NRP-77 RESOURCE

The Institute for Biomedical Ethics at the University of Basel (IBMB), Switzerland ( ), is dedicated to research and teaching of biomedical ethics at the Medical and Science Faculties. We are currently looking for three dynamic and independent graduate students (Master's degree) or medical doctors who are interested in carrying out their PhD work in biomedical ethics. The projects for which we have funding focus on ethical issues related to "Digitalization in Healthcare" as part of Swiss National Science's National Research Program 77 "Digital Transformation".

Position Available starting: July 2021 or Later

Length of PhD Program: 3 years

PhD Salary: In accordance with SNSF doctoral salary guideline

Your profile

  • Master's degree in philosophy, psychology, bioethics, medicine, and other related fields.
  • Excellent language skills in English and German
  • Ability to speak and understand French is highly desirable.
  • Willingness to contribute towards an empirical project.
  • Knowledge of qualitative and quantitative research design.
  • Outstanding Master's and Bachelor's academic grades.
  • Enthusiasm, responsibility and interest in an academic career.
  • Ability to implement an already designed research project.

We offer you

  • Enrolment in a Swiss Bologna accredited PhD Program in Bioethics, Health Policy and Legal medicine.
  • Student will complete empirical methods courses as part of the PhD Program in order to successfully conduct their PhD Project.
  • Student will have the opportunity to engage in a cutting-edge topic of ethics and digitalization.
  • Student will also have the possibility to contribute to the academic life at the IBMB, including contributions to teaching, as well as collaboration in other research projects and academic publications in peer reviewed journals.

Environment: The University of Basel is the oldest Swiss university with a long tradition in ethics and the humanities. It has a long-standing reputation in outstanding research and teaching. Doctoral candidates at the University come from many international countries providing a vibrant and rich community. More information about the University is available at The city of Basel is a global centre for biomedical research with major academic institutions and research departments of leading life science companies. Basel is a multicultural city and ranks among the best in terms of quality of life.

Project Information: SmaRt homES, Older adUlts, and caRegivers: Facilitating social aCceptance and negotiating rEsponsibilities [RESOURCE]

The Swiss older adult population (65 years and older) stands already at 18%, – i.e. 1.5 million persons. Their increasing number mean unsustainable old-age dependency ratio, greater healthcare costs, and high caregiving burden. Consequently, our society faces a situation where it is difficult to address the needs of the elderly population. With the digitalization of our lives, the hope is that smart home health technology could help decrease costs of maintaining older people while securing their safety both at home and in institutions. Many social and ethical issues arise with the use of such technology, including autonomy, privacy, data safety, and access. There are fears that technology may replace human contact, a central element in the provision of care. Shifting caregiving responsibilities from human caregivers to smart home devices is a delicate and impactful process. RESOURCE will critically evaluate the knowledge, willingness, and concerns associated with the use of smart home health technology in the care of older persons, particularly, the ethical and social concerns. The project employs mixed-method approach coupled with normative-empirical analysis. It will offer a fundamental reflection to distinguish between ethically and socially acceptable technologies and those that are not. In addition, technologies will be evaluated in regards to how pressing their implementation currently is. Application / Contact

Applications must be submitted in English and should include in a single PDF file: (1) A detailed CV, including an overview of study results (grades), the title of your master thesis, contact information of (at least) two (academic) referees, and a PDF-file of the master thesis; (2) A motivation letter (maximum two pages, double-spaced, font 12), specifying your interests in the topic and PhD at Basel.

Applications should be sent via email directly to PD Dr. Tenzin Wangmo (, with email subject "PhD positions RESOURCE", by April 30th 2021. After an initial screening, interviews will take place with top five candidates via Zoom or Skype between March – May 2021.

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