Benjamin Capps

Associate Professor

Ben J. Capps, PhD

Contact Information

Mailing Address:
Department of Bioethics
Faculty of Medicine, Dalhousie University
5849 University Avenue, Room C-312, CRC Bldg
PO Box 15000
Halifax, NS     B3H 4R2


Department of Bioethics

Research topics:

  • Ethics in public health
  • One Health and Environmental Ethics (One Health Ethics; Cambridge University Press, Forthcoming, 2023)
  • Stem Cell Science and Ethics (Co-edited, Contested Cells; Imperial Collage Press, 2010)
  • Neuroethics, drugs (mis)use and addiction research (with others, Addiction Neurobiology; Office for Official Publications of the European Communities, 2009)
  • Jurisprudential and political theory, in particular the application of human rights in biotechnology and bio-medicine.

Related information:


  • BSc (Hons) Genetics, Cardiff University, UK
  • MA, School of Law, University of Sheffield, UK
  • PhD, Faculty of Medicine, University of Bristol, UK

Research interests

Ben’s work investigates issues relating to the nexus between applied ethics, normative theory, and legal doctrine. His overall aim is to impart substantive theoretical guidance (or ethical grounding and critique) that has professional and wider social impact. He was the PI (later international consultant) on the project ‘One Health, Zoonotic Diseases and Pandemic Planning: Creating a Bioethics Framework in Singapore’ (Ministry of Health, Singapore, 2014-16); and Workpackage Leader on ‘EPOCH: Ethics in Public Policy Making: The Case of Human Enhancement’ (European Commission, 2010-12).

Selected publications

  • Capps, B. 2021. One Health Ethics. Bioethics
  • Capps, B. 2021. Where does Open Science Lead Us During a Pandemic? A Public Good Argument to Prioritise Rights in the Open Commons. Cambridge Quarterly of Healthcare Ethics 30(1): 1-14
  • Capps, B., Van de Eijk, Y., and Krahn, T. 2020. Conflicts of Interest in E-Cigarette Research: A Public Good and Public Interest Perspective. Bioethics 34(1): 114-122.
  • Lysaght T., Capps, B., Bailey, M., Bickford, D., Coker, R., Lederman, Z., Watson, S. and Tambyah, P. 2017. Justice is the Missing Link in One Health: Results of a Mixed Methods Study in an Urban City State. PLoS ONE 12(1): e0170967
  • Mulvihill, J. Capps, B., Joly, J. Lysaght, T., Zwart, H. and Chadwick, R. The International Human Genome Organisation (HUGO) Committee of Ethics, Law, and Society (CELS). 2017. Ethical Issues of CRISPR Technology and Gene Editing through the Lens of Solidarity. British Medical Bulletin 122(1): 109-122
  • Capps, B. 2016. The Funding of Medical Research by Industry: Can a Good Tree bring Forth Evil Fruit? British Medical Bulletin 118(1):5-15
  • Capps, B. 2016. Public Goods in the Ethical Reconsideration of Research Innovation. In: Capps, P. and Patterson, S. (eds) Ethical Rationalism and the Law. Hart Publishing
  • Capps, B., Bailey, M., Bickford, D., Coker, R., Lederman, Z., Lover, A., Lysaght, T., and Tambyah, P. 2015. Introducing One Health to the Ethical Debate about Zoonotic Diseases in South East Asia. Bioethics 29(8): 588–596
  • Lysaght, T, Kerridge, I., Sipp, D., Porter, G. and Capps, B. 2013. Global Bionetworks and Challenges in Regulating Autologous Adult Stem Cells. American Journal of Medicine 126(11): 941-943

Selected awards and honours

  • Wellcome Trust Research Fellowship (Ph.D. Medicine; 2000-2003), Centre for Ethics in Medicine, School of Medicine, University of Bristol, UK. ‘UK and European Policy in Stem Cell Research: Proposals for the Ethical Grounding of Future Regulation.’
  • Wellcome Trust Postdoctoral Research Fellowship (2004-2006); Centre for Ethics in Medicine, University of Bristol, UK. “Stem Cell Therapy and ‘Procedural Ethics’: Proposals for a Harmonised Policy within the European Union.”
  • Honorary Associate Member; ESRC Centre for Economic and Social Aspects of Genomics (Cesagen), Cardiff University, UK. 2010-2014.

Service & Activity

  • Humanimal Trust. Member of Science Committee on One Medicine. Surrey, United Kingdom, Registered Charity Nos 1156927 & SC048960; September 2022-present.
  • Chair, Human Genome Organisation (HUGO) Committee on Ethics, Law and Society. Advisory to HUGO, The Human Variome Project, and Human Genome Variation Society
  • Journal Advisory Board: Cambridge Quarterly of Healthcare Ethics. Cambridge University Press. Clinical Neuroethics Advisory Board.
  • World Federation for Animals: One Health Working Group.
  • Belris: Bioethics and Legal Research in Singapore. Joint-Director of Singapore-based independent think-tank. 2014- 2016.
  • Neuroethics Working Group, Bioethics Advisory Committee. Singapore. 2011- 2014.
  • Pro-Tem National Oversight Committee for Human-Animal Combinations in Stem Cell Research. Ministry of Health, Singapore. 2011- 2012.
  • Royal United Hospital Trust (City of Bath, UK) Clinical Ethics Committee. 2003-2008.

Teaching and Service

  • Nominated Member, Leon and Rose Zitner Prize; Faculty of Health [representing Faculty of Medicine, with Faculty of Health, Faculty of Dentistry or Faculty of Arts & Social Sciences] 2001-present.