imagesMain Fields of Research and Interest

Human dignity, Sanctity of Life

Kantian moral philosophy

Human bioethics

Nursing ethics

Interdisciplinary dialogue between humanities & sciences

Animal ethics

Research about Erich Wasmann SJ (1859-1931),
internationally well-known entomologist, Thomistic animal psychologist,
and an early clerical defender of Darwin´s theory of evolution 

Food ethics

Interreligious aspects of these issues

Education and Qualifications

2003 PhD in Theological Ethics at the University of Bonn

1989 Examination (1. Staatsexamen Sekundarstufe II) in Catholic Theology and Chemistry at the University of Bonn

1980 High school diploma




Grants / Scholarships

2011 Project of an interdisciplinary research-week about “Dignity and Autonomy as Leading Concepts in Bioethics” (ELSA-program: Ethical, Legal and Social Aspects in the Life Sciences), sponsored by the Federal Ministry for Education and Sciences (BMBF), took place at the University of Bonn, in cooperation with Prof. Dr. iur. Gunnar Duttge (University of Goettingen) and Prof. Dr. phil. Peter Kunzmann (University of Jena)

1/2005 – 9/2006 Postdoctoral Research Scientist in the Lise-Meitner-Program of the federal state North-Rhine-Westfalia, Germany (Research project: “Sanctity of Life“)

10/99 – 10/2001 PhD Student in the DFG-Graduiertenkolleg “Ethics in the humanities and in the sciences” (a graduate program of the German National Science Foundation) at the University of Tuebingen (Research project: “Dignity of Creatures? The Idea of Dignity in the Horizon of Bioethics”; 2003 Prize of the Karl-Heim-Society)




English Papers

Autonomy and Human Dignity in the Western Ethical Debate. Cultural Diversities – Ethical Transformations – Biomedical Challenges. In: Journal for Health and Culture, Istanbul 2018 (i.p.)

Do Animals Have a Natural Right to Life? Bioethical Challenges to Kant´s Indirect Duty Debate and the Question of Animal Killing. In: Franck L. B. Meijboom, Elsbeth N. Stassen (Ed.): The End of Animal Life: A Start for Ethical Debate. Ethical and Societal Considerations on Killing Animals. Wageningen Academic Publishers 2016, p. 61–77. ISBN 978-90-8686-260-3 

“Sanctity of Life” – A Bioethical Principle for a Right to Life? In: Ethical Theory and Moral Practice (ETMP), vol. 15, no. 3, 2012, p. 295–308. DOI 10.1007/s10677-012-9369-0 (online published May 22nd, 2012). open access 

Why Should We Make a Difference? How Dignity Can Work in Animal Ethics. In Bioethica Forum vol. 5, No. 1, 2012, p. 4–12. ISSN 1662–6001

in coop. with Gerhard Höver: Hospice and Palliative Care as a Paradigm for an Ethics of Pain Medicine: A European Perspective with Global Implications. In: James Giordano; M.V. Boswell (Eds.): Pain Medicine: Philosophy, Ethics, and Policy. Linton Atlantic Books, Ltd.: Louisville 2009, 75–83. ISBN 954-0-9817854-4-8

in coop. with H. W. Ingensiep, B. Skorupinski, M. Meinhardt: Consensus Conference – A Case Study: PubliForum in Switzerland. With Special Respect to the Role of Lay Persons and Ethics. In: Journal for Agricultural and Environmental Ethics (JAGE) 2007, no.1, 37–52. ISSN 1187-7863

in coop. with Volker Beekman et al.: Ethical Bio-Technology Assessment Tools for Agriculture and Food Production.Ethical Bio-TA Tools (QLG6-CT-2002-02594) The Hague, February 2006. 59p.  Ethical TA Tools _final_report_binnenwerk_59p

Does Beast Suffering Count for Kant? A Contextual Examination of § 17 in the Doctrine of Virtue. In: Essays in Philosophy. A Biannual Journal, Vol. 5, No. 2, 2004, 16 S. ISSN 1526-0569