How Are Good Healthcare Practitioners Made and Lost?

What factors are creating the conditions for corroding practitioners’ capacity to develop a well-ordered professional identity? How is corrosion associated with, for example, the healthcare institutions, laws and systems within which practitioners operate? How do such conditions, as they influence the everyday practices of healthcare practitioners, constrain practitioners in their desire to act for the good, in accordance with what they understand to be their vocation? 


This international, interdisciplinary conference brings together those with dual expertise in both healthcare and ethics or theology to attempt to diagnose the conditions for corrosion which currently prevail and consider what should be done to address them.


What counts as corrosion or enhancement will depend on a judgment between rival conceptions of certain ethical considerations. These include the requirements of justice or the nature of the good. Choices between such rival conceptions will have far-reaching consequences. For example, amidst changing professional mores and legal regimes (in the USA, UK and parts of the EU), medicine’s traditional focus on the good of solely seeking patients’ health is now under critical scrutiny, legal challenge and complex institutional pressures. Just where the way of medicine should lie in relation to such changes requires robust societal and professional debate.


Foci for entering critically into this debate might include: conflicts between traditional and more recent ways of conceiving the goals and task of medicine; the impact on professional identity of differences about how we die well; the content and goals of professional formation (e.g. through university training/education, clinical training); the precise ways in which ethical principles shape the institutional environments in which practitioners seek a well-ordered professional identity (e.g. marketisation; relevant policy/law).


While the conference title accents an understanding of corrosion, it will place significant weight on proposing pathways for repair. Accordingly, one fruit of the exercise may be to contribute thinking targeted to support physicians/doctors and other health care practitioners who bear the burden of protecting healthcare from corrosion. Outputs may include any or all of (i) special journal issues, (ii) online publications, (iii) podcasts, and (iv) contributions to relevant policy debates.



Joshua Hordern, PhD, Professor of Christian Ethics, Faculty of Theology and Religion, University of Oxford; Governing Body Fellow, Harris Manchester College; Director, Healthcare Values Partnership, and Associate Director, McDonald Centre for Theology, Ethics and Public Life, University of Oxford. 

Lydia Dugdale, MD, MAR, Dorothy L and Daniel H Silberberg Associate Professor of Medicine; Director, Columbia Center for Clinical Medical Ethics, Columbia University Vagelos College of Physicians & Surgeons. 

Farr Curlin, MD, Josiah C Trent Professor of Medical Humanities, Trent Center for Bioethics, Humanities, & History of Medicine, Duke University; Co-director, Theology, Medicine, and Culture, Duke Divinity School. 

Ashley Moyse, PhD, Assistant Professor of Medical Ethics and McDonald Scholar, Columbia Center for Clinical Medical Ethics, Columbia University Vagelos College of Physicians & Surgeons; Director, Columbia Character Cooperative; Research Fellow, Harris Manchester College, University of Oxford. 



Ryan M. Antiel, MD, MSME is Assistant Professor of Pediatric Surgery at Duke University School of Medicine and a core faculty member at the Trent Center for Bioethics, Humanities, and History of Medicine where he directs the Center’s Clinical Ethics Fellowship.  

Dr John Bekos teaches Christian Ethics and Bioethics at the Theological School of the Church of Cyprus and the University of Cyprus. 

Brian Brock is Professor of Moral and Practical Theology at the University of Aberdeen. 

Farr Curlin, MD, is Josiah Trent Professor of Medical Humanities and Co-Director of the Theology, Medicine and Culture Initiative at Duke University. 

Dr Dafydd Mills Daniel is Lecturer in Divinity, School of Divinity, University of St Andrews. 

Ariel Dempsey earned her MD at Michigan State University College of Human Medicine and is currently at the University of Oxford working on a DPhil in Science and Religion under Dr Alister McGrath. 

Lydia Dugdale, MD, MAR, is the Dorothy L. and Daniel H. Silberberg Associate Professor of Medicine at Columbia University Vagelos College of Physicians and Surgeons and Director of the Center for Clinical Medical Ethics.

Professor Ilora Baroness Finlay of Llandaff (FRCP, FRCGP, FMedSci, FHEA, FLSW) is an independent Crossbench Peer in the House of Lords, and a Deputy Speaker. 

Dallas Gingles is Director of the Houston-Galveston Extension Program and Perkins Fellow in Systematic Theology at Perkins School of Theology, Southern Methodist University where he teaches courses in systematic theology, moral theology, Dietrich Bonhoeffer, and bioethics. 

Alberto Giubilini is a Senior Research Fellow at the University of Oxford, based at the Oxford Uehiro Centre for Practical Ethics and Wellcome Centre for Ethics and Humanities. 

Gina Hadley is the John Henry Felix Tutorial Fellow in Medicine at Harris Manchester College, Oxford.

Joshua Hordern, PhD, is Professor of Christian Ethics at the Faculty of Theology and Religion, University of Oxford; a Governing Body Fellow of Harris Manchester College; Director of the Healthcare Values Partnership; and Associate Director, McDonald Centre for Theology, Ethics and Public Life, University of Oxford.

Warren Kinghorn is Associate Professor of Psychiatry at Duke University Medical Center; Esther Colliflower Associate Professor of the Practice of Pastoral and Moral Theology at Duke Divinity School; co-director of the Theology, Medicine, and Culture Initiative at Duke Divinity School; and a staff psychiatrist at the Durham VA Medical Center. 

David Albert Jones is Director of the Anscombe Bioethics Centre in Oxford (2010 -). 

Dr Christina Lamb is a Bioethicist and Implementation Scientist whose program of research focuses on conscience in relation to theology, philosophy, bioethics and healthcare as well as end-of-life ethics for pediatric populations.

Ashley Moyse, PhD, is the Assistant Professor of Medical Ethics and McDonald Scholar in the Center for Clinical Medical Ethics at Columbia University Vagelos College of Physicians & Surgeons.

Nils Oermann is full professor for Ethics with an emphasis on sustainability and sustainable economics at Lüneburg University. 

Dr Mehrunisha Suleman is Director of Medical Ethics and Law Education at the Ethox Centre, University of Oxford. 

Dr Brian A. Williams teaches at Eastern University (Philadelphia), where he is Dean of the Templeton Honors College; Dean of the College of Arts & Humanities; and Associate Professor of Ethics & Liberal Arts.