Ethics Research

Ethics is a topic of research activity across the University. Ethics research may be descriptive, prescriptive, or both.

  • Descriptive research explores stakeholder values, telling us about the beliefs and attitudes that different people hold.
  • Prescriptive research focuses not on what is, but on what ought to be – not on what values people actually hold, but on what values we should exhibit. 

One of ASU’s signature strengths in ethics research is the combination of descriptive and prescriptive methods to enhance social and ethical deliberation amongst citizens. Whether the subject is nanotechnology, embryo research, institutional design, or religious conflict, ASU researchers generate resources and opportunities to enhance public deliberation about controversial and important issues. 

The Center for Nanotechnology in Society at ASU (CNS-ASU) is the largest center for research, education and outreach on the societal aspects of nanotechnology in the world.
The Center for the Study of Religion and Conflict at Arizona State University promotes interdisciplinary research and education on the dynamics of religion and conflict with the aim of advancing knowledge, seeking solutions and informing policy.
The Embryo Project is a collection of researchers who study the historical and social contexts of reproductive medicine, developmental biology, and embryology.
Ethical issues infuse the life sciences, biomedical research, and medical practice. ASU’s embedded ethicists in the life sciences address philosophical and pragmatic questions locally and globally.