The Center for Ethics and Values in the Sciences was established in 1998 by the University of Alabama Trustees. From its inception, the Center was unique in its focus not just on bioethics, but on broad value questions in the sciences in general. Under the directorship of Prof. Harold Kincaid, the Center has sponsored a wide range of activities. Through its activities, the Center has established an international reputation as a venue for a discussion about values and ethics in the sciences.
While prominent intellectual trends during the twentieth century sought to maintain a strict separation between science and values, in fact values motivate and inform science (and the other way around) in important and interesting ways.
The Center for Ethics and Values in the Sciences at UAB seeks to be a focal point for discussion of values and ethics in the sciences. The central terms are to be understood broadly: “ethics and values” to include things like truth-values and functions, and “the sciences” to cover disciplines like medicine and law.
The Center sponsors a variety of activities, including public lectures; national conferences, which have led to multiple publications; workshops; the teaching of responsible conduct of research; undergraduate research and teaching; and community outreach. The Center also sponsors the UAB Ethics Bowl team, 2010 national champions.
In addition, the Center develops and maintains educational materials, including interactive videos, video clips, PowerPoint outlines, bibliographies, cases for group discussion, and collections of helpful links. These materials can be used, among other things, in the teaching of responsible conduct of research.
Center activities are supported by the Department of Philosophy, the College for Arts and Sciences, the Gregory Fleming James Cystic Fibrosis Research Center, the Center for Clinical and Translational Science, and the Graduate School.
Recent and upcoming activities are listed on the Activities page.