PhD Opportunity in Biomedical Ethics

Posted March 25th 2024

Institute for Biomedical Ethics

Basel, Switzerland

The Institute for Biomedical Ethics at the University of Basel (IBMB), Switzerland (, is currently looking for dynamic and independent graduate students (Master’s degree) who are interested in carrying out their PhD work in the ethics of automation. The PhD position is part of our work as partners in the National Center for Competence in Research (NCCR) in Dependable, Ubiquitous, Automation, funded by the Swiss National Science Foundation. The Developing Ethics for Automation project collects qualitative interview data as well as quantitative survey data to investigate public and expert attitudes towards integrating ethics in automation across different aspects of society (including autonomous vehicles, smart energy networks, and beyond). The successful candidate will ideally start work in August 2024.
Your tasks:
• Coordinating and managing a research project including carrying out qualitative interviews and analyzing a large panel data set, including collaboration with other NCCR Automation researchers.
• Continuing your education/training (e.g., taking courses on research methods).
• Mentoring research assistants, supervising bachelor and master students and reviewing their contributions.
• Documenting and presenting research findings in English.
• Contributing to various organizational processes at the IBMB.
Your qualifications:
• Master’s degree in ethics, philosophy, psychology, bioethics, law, AI or other related fields.
• Very good Master’s and Bachelor’s academic grades.
• Excellent language skills in English.
• Willingness to contribute towards an empirical project.
• Ability to speak and understand German and/or French.)
• Excellent knowledge of research methods and statistics; ideally you are familiar with the analysis of large panel data sets; at a minimum, you are willing to quickly learn these skills independently.
• High level of commitment, intrinsic motivation, enthusiasm, and responsibility.
• You wish to be an integral part of an international team and contribute to its success.
• Your long-term goal is an academic career.
• You have strong organizational skills and the ability to work independently.
We offer:
• Enrolement in a Swiss Bologna accredited PhD Program in Bioethics and Health Policy at one of the leading research universities in Europe, in collaboration with the Center for Social Psychology.
• An attractive salary and well-equipped working environment.
• Positive and productive working atmosphere in which you can develop yourself and realize your potential with in a dedicated team that enjoys collaborating on various projects.
• Opportunity to engage in a cutting-edge interdisciplinary topic.
• Empirical methods courses in order to successfully conduct your PhD Project.
• You will also have the possibility to contribute to the academic life at the IBMB, including contributions to teaching, collaboration in other research projects and academic publications in scientific journals.
Applications: 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 Dr David Shaw ( by 30th April 2024.

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