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Dr Jonathan Ives

Dr Jonathan Ives

Dr Jonathan Ives
BA, M.Phil, PhD(Birm.)

Reader in Empirical Bioethics

Office G.04a
Canynge Hall,
39 Whatley Road, Bristol BS8 2PS
(See a map)

+44 (0) 7952 261 774
+44 (0) 117 3314511



Jon joined the University of Bristol's Centre for Ethics in Medicine in 2016, and works to develop research and teaching in Bioethics.

Jon initially trained in Philosophy, obtaining a BA and M.Phil from Birmingham between 2000-2004.  In 2004 he began a Wellcome Trust funded PhD in Biomedical Ethics and Law at the University of Birmingham's Medical School, graduating in 2007 and going on to spend a year as a research fellow on an NIHR funded project exploring the ethics of healthcare workers' responses to working during an influenza pandemic.  In 2008 he obtained his first lectureship, and was promoted to Senior Lecturer in 2013.

Jon's work is located in the field of Bioethics, and covers a broad spectrum of topics and methodologies.  He is an interdisciplinary researcher, trained in both Philosophical and Social Science research methods, with experience in a range of mixed-method research.  His interests, however, are focussed on normative questions around biomedicine and healthcare.

He has published widely on the theory and methodology of Empirical Bioethics, and this methodological work finds expression and application in a variety of Bioethics topics.  Jon has published on, inter alia; the ethics of fathers and families; reproductive ethics, end of life ethics, research ethics,  ethics and methodology in clinical trial design; the ethics of medical eduction; mental health.

His recent book (co-edited with Michael Dunn and Alan Cribb) 'Empirical Bioethics: Theoretical and Practical perspectives' is currently in press with Cambridge University Press.  He is Section Editor (Methodology in Bioethics) for BMC Medical Ethics and Associate Editor (Methods) for Health Care Analysis.

His work has been funded by The Wellcome Trust, ESRC, AHRC, Brocher Foundation, Brigstow Foundation.

Activities / Findings





Jon is responsible for the year 3 ethics teaching and assessment on the MBChB, and contributes to teaching and assessment across the MBChB ethics curriculum.  

He teaches, supervises and assesses on the intercalated Bioethics BSc run by the Centre for Ethics in Medicine.


Jon currently supervises 2 PhD students:

  • Georgina Morley (Sept 2015 – 2018: FT) – Moral distress in nursing.  Funded by The Wellcome Trust.
  • Bert Vanderhaegen (2014 – 2020: PT) - A Critical Reflection upon the Nature, Limits and Impact of Empirical Ethics. Self-funded

Past PhD students include:

  • Derek Kyte (2011 – 2014) - Methodological and ethical issues in health-related quality of life research. Passed with minor corrections in October 2014.  MRC Midlands Midlands Hub for Trials Methodology funded.
  • Simon Jenkins (2010 – 2013) - The ethical allocation of eggs donated for the purpose of fertility treatment.  Completed: passed with minor corrections in Nov 2013. AHRC funded
  • Gregory Moorlock (2009-2012) - An empirically informed ethical analysis of directed and conditional cadaveric organ donation. Completed: passed with minor corrections in Feb 2012.  AHRC funded


  • Empirical Bioethics
  • Bioethics
  • Qualitative Research
  • Fathers
  • Fatherhood: Families
  • Reproductive Health
  • Mental Health
  • End-of-life


  • Empirical Bioethics
  • Philosophy
  • Qualitative Methods
  • Sociology



Bristol Medical School (PHS)

Centres, collaborations and units

Selected publications

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Recent publications

View complete publications list in the University of Bristol publications system

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