The Institute for Ethics & Society (IES) is a national research institute of The University of Notre Dame Australia based on the Sydney campus.

We’re interested in exploring the connections between good lives and a good society. Our research aims at better understanding how cultivating the virtues can strengthen civil society and support human flourishing. We’re also committed to engaging with key issues in bioethics and with the significant role that religion plays in questions of ethics and society.

Our cross-disciplinary research team includes moral philosophers, bioethicists, medical researchers and social scientists. We work with a wide range of partners outside the University, especially in the healthcare and education sectors.

The IES has three Research Focus Areas:

  • Moral Philosophy & Ethics Education (MPEE): researches foundational questions about the nature of virtuous character traits, the moral psychology of specific virtues and vices, and practical questions about how to cultivate good character.
  • Bioethics & Healthcare Ethics (BHE): researches a range of applied ethical issues related to the nature of healthcare in a civil society, with a distinctive focus on developing novel ways of challenging polarised bioethical debates.
  • Religion & Global Ethics (RGE): researches the unique role religious institutions and religious actors play in civil society, both at the grassroots and international levels.