Values Statement


VELiM is a centre for academic research, for teaching and learning in bioethics and the medical humanities, and for ethical consultation and discussion. We aim to stimulate creative thought, dialogue and action. Our work engages different disciplinary perspectives and fosters a community based on collegiality and critical inquiry.

VELiM's research focuses on six key areas:

  • experience of illness and healthcare
  • ethics of science and biotechnology
  • philosophy of medicine, science, language and knowledge
  • ethical, socio-political and epistemic aspects of public discourse about science and medicine
  • ethics of patient care, health services and health policy
  • medical humanities


Teaching and learning at VELiM occurs through:

  • an innovative postgraduate program in bioethics and the medical humanities
  • training of researchers at postgraduate level and beyond
  • dialogue and collaboration between senior researchers.


VELiM provides consultative services to the University and to the wider community. It provides forums for the exchange of ideas between local and international scholars and members of the public who share an interest in ethics, social and biomedical research and their application to practice.

VELiM's work:

  • is oriented to human health and welfare
  • attends closely to the things that people say and write about their needs, values and experiences
  • investigates the ways in which human beings interact with and relate to each other, to their communities, to other living species, and to their environment
  • promotes intellectual and creative diversity by mixing expertise in unusual combinations
  • forms an evolving resource for innovation and creative interaction in research.


In all of its activities, VELiM strives to be:

  • participatory, by involving diverse groups in the production of new knowledge
  • political, by using knowledge to promote justice, equity and self-determination, and to influence public policy
  • rigorous, by using established research methods and by developing new methods where established methods fall short
  • evidence-based, through detailed empirical study of communication, interaction and meaning
  • critical, by exploring the limitations of any single discipline or perspective.


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