In addition to their original research, scholarship, teaching, mentoring, and public awareness outreach, our faculty perform significant service – within Johns Hopkins University, and in the broader community.

One way is through the Research Ethics Consultation Service, assisting JHU investigators in resolving ethical issues throughout the entire research process. Click here to learn more about this service and to request a consultation.

Read more below about how Berman faculty are making a difference through their service in the field of bioethics.

Clinical Ethics

Berman Institute faculty members lead the Ethics Committees and Consultation Services at Johns Hopkins Hospital (JHH) and Johns Hopkins Bayview Medical Center (JHBMC). Our faculty also assist with these services in other Johns Hopkins Health System and Affiliate entities. They also serve in related leadership positions in key Hospital, Health System and University Committees and task forces.

Berman Institute faculty play a critical role in the Johns Hopkins Institutional Review Board (IRB) system, by serving as members of all six School of Medicine and both School of Public Health IRBs, with two faculty members in leadership positions on their respective IRBs. Faculty members also serve on key committees and initiatives in their respective Schools of Nursing, Medicine, and Public Health as well as national and international leadership in organizations and initiatives addressing key areas of clinical ethics.

Berman Institute faculty members are involved with national policy initiatives regarding clinical ethics. These include developing standards for clinical ethics consultation, standards for education and training in professionalism, and ethical practice for nurses.

Science & Bioethics

Berman Institute faculty have led committees at Johns Hopkins, for the State of Maryland, and for the International Society for Stem Cell Research on ethics and stem cell science; have chaired and served on committees for the National Academy of Medicine on ethics and techniques for preventing maternal transmission of mitochondrial DNA diseases, and gene editing and served on other national committees related to ethics and genetic science; the Berman Institute publishes highly subscribed email newsletters providing weekly news roundups on a variety of topics including: ethics and brain science, and ethics and stem cell science. providing key resources for these fields.

Research Bioethics

Our faculty as a matter of institutional policy, sit on the IRBs of the Schools of Medicine and Public Health.  In addition, the IRB for the All of Us Research program is chaired by Nancy Kass. Faculty also serve as advisors to the IRBs on matters of institutional policy regarding human research. Berman faculty founded and continues to staff the Research Ethics Consultation service. Berman faculty have been members of, staffed, or testified before President Clinton’s Advisory Committee on Human Radiation Experiments, President Clinton’s National Bioethics Advisory Commission; President Bush’s Council on Bioethics, and President Obama’s Commission for the study of Bioethical Issues. Berman faculty have led or served on committees of the National Academy of medicine related to human and to animal research and led work for the National Cancer Institute creating model national guidance on informed consent; Berman faculty have served on multiple Data Safety and Monitoring Boards for federally and privately funded trials including the recent NIH sponsored ebola trials. Berman faculty also lead institutional, statewide, and international policy efforts on ethics and stem cell research, as above.

Global Bioethics

Berman faculty have been involved in multiple initiatives of the World Health Organization, creating ethics guidance on topics of global health importance and have organized or been participants in multiple international policy development activities on topics including global food, pandemic influenza, sexual violence, human rights, HIV prevention, and patient safety. Berman faculty are regularly called upon to participate on the global stage to help develop ethics guidance and policy recommendations.