Prof. Dr. Annette Dufner

Annette Dufner
© Volker Lannert

University of Bonn

Institute for Science and Ethics
- Ethics and Medical Ethics -
Bonner Talweg 57
53113 Bonn

(Dezember 2021)

Area of Specialization

  • philosophical ethics and medical ethics

Areas of Competency

  • legal philosophy, social and political philosophy, personal identity theory, 19th/20th century German and British moral philosophy

Academic Employment

  • Since Apr. 2017: Professor for Ethics and Medical Ethics, University of Bonn, Germany
  • 2015 - 2017: Professor for Practical Philosophy, Philosophy & Economics Program, University of Bayreuth, Germany
  • 2010 - 2015: Research Fellow at the Centre for Advanced Study in Bioethics, University of Muenster, Germany
  • 2009 - 2010: Postdoc for Philosophy & Economics, University of Bayreuth, Germany
  • 2003 - 2009: PhD Candidate, Instructor, Teaching Assistant, and Essay Clinician in Philosophy, University of Toronto, Canada

Philosophical Education and Degrees

  • 2010 - 2016: “Habilitation” in philosophy, University of Muenster, GermanyTitle: Moral Aggregation. Fairness and Efficiency in Medical Rescue Conflicts Supervisor: Prof. Dr. med. Bettina Schöne-Seifert, Muenster, Germany
    Readers: Prof. Dr. Kurt Bayertz (Muenster), Prof. Dr. Thomas Schramme (Liverpool), Prof Dr. med. Hartmut Schmidt (Muenster)
  • 2003 - 2009: PhD in philosophy, University of Toronto, Canada Title: The Normative Implications of Personal Identity Theory
    Supervisor: Prof. Thoma Hurka, BA (Toronto), BPhil, DPhil (Oxford) Readers: Prof. Wayne Sumner, BA (Toronto), MA, PhD (Princeton), Prof. Sergio Tenenbaum, BA (Hebrew), PhD (Pittsburgh), Prof. Dennis McKerlie, BA, MA (Calgary), DPhil (Oxford)
  • 1996 - 2002: BA/MA in philosophy and literature, University of Karlsruhe, Germany, with exchange years at Queen’s University, Kingston, Canada, and Brown University, Providence, RI, USA

Organized Events (Selection)

  • Podium Discussion:
    „The Upcoming Assisted Suicide Regulation“
    Alexandra Philipsen (Director of Psychiatry, University Clinics Bonn)
    Ulrich Lilie (President of Diakonie Deutschland)
    Annette Dufner (Institute for Science and Ethics, University of Bonn)
    October 11, 2021

  • Presentation by David Shoemaker (Cornell, USA):
    „Responsibility and Discrimination“
    October 31, 2019

  • Lecture Series Medicine – Ethics – Law:
    With talks by local experts such as Mariacarla Gadebusch-Bondio (Medical Humanities), Rainer Banse (Psychology), Hartmut Kreß (Theology), Doris Lucke (Sociology), Burkhard Madea (Forensic Medicine), Lukas Radbruch (Palliative Medicine), Christian Strassburg (Internal Medicine), Torsten Verrel (Law) and many others.
    Summer term 2018 – winter term 2019/20

  • Lecture Series Medicine - Ethics - Law:
    Winter Term 2018/19
    Summer Term 2019

  • Workshop on Prioritarianism:
    "New Perspectives on Priority and Efficiency in Distributive Justice Ethics"
    Satellite Workshop at the Congress of the International Society for Utilitarian Studies
    July 27 & 28, 2018 (more2)

  • Workshop:
    The Principle of Double Effect in Law, Secular Ethics and Theology (in German)
    March 5 & 6, 2018



  • Whose Life Should We Save? Ethical Approaches to Medical Rescue Conflicts (in German), Berlin:
    Suhrkamp 2021.
    How should resources such as donor organs be distributed among patients on the waiting list? Who should receive a ventilator during the pandemic, if there are more patients than intensive care unit beds? This book addresses recent approaches to distributive justice under conditions of scarcity. In scenarios in which not everybody in need can receive help there is often a tension between efficiency and fairness. Annette Dufner shows how these contradicting criteria can be reconciled in concrete cases, and what such a position would imply for the distribution of donor organs through the Eurotransplant algorithm and for the distribution of scarce ventilators during the current pandemic.
  • Individuals in Moral Theory (book manuscript).

Edited Volumes

  • “The Ethics of Organ Transplantation” (in German), special issue of Jahrbuch für Wissenschaft und Ethik (2019) 23: 105-206.
  • Henry Sidgwick: Utilitarianism and German Philosophy (in German), edited and translated together with Johannes Müller-Salo, Hamburg: Felix Meiner 2019.
  • “Philosophy of Dementia” (in German), special issue of Zeitschrift für Praktische Philosophie (2018) 5:1, 73-230.
  • Autonomy and its Limits. Contemporary German and Hungarian Bioethical Writings (in Hungarian), together with Sandor Kőmüves and Erzsébet Rózsa, Debrecen: Debrecen University Press 2016.
  • Public Autonomy, Private Paternalism? special issue of Ethical Theory and Moral Practice, together with Michael Kühler, (2014) 17: 3, 351-441.Ethical Theory and Moral Practice, zusammen mit Michael Kühler, (2014) 17: 3, 351-441.

In Peer-Reviewed Journals

  • „Non-Invasive Prenatal Testing (NIPT): Does the Practice Discriminate against Persons with
    Disabilities?“, in: Journal of Perinatal Medicine (2021), 49:8, 945-948.
  • “Withdrawal of Intensive Care during Times of Severe Scarcity: Triage during a Pandemic only upon Arrival or with the Inclusion of Patients who are Already under Treatment?”, in: Bioethics (2021), 35:2, 118-124.
  • “Rescuing the Greater Number. A Debate about Cornerstones in Normative Ethics” (in German), together with Bettina Schöne-Seifert, in: Zeitschrift für praktische Philosophie (2019), 6:2, 15-42.
  • “Better off without Parents? Legal and Ethical Questions concerning Refugee Children in Germany”, together with Lars Hillmann, in: Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies (2017), 45:2, 331-348.
  • “Trust and Altruism - Organ Distribution Scandals: Do They Provide Good Reasons to Refuse Posthumous Donation?”, together with John Harris (Manchester), in: Journal of Medicine and Philosophy (2015), 40:3, 328-341.
  • “Blood Products and the Commodification Debate. The Blurry Concept of Altruism and the ‘Implicit Price’ of Readily Available Body Parts”, in: Health Care Ethics Forum (2015) 27:4, 347-359.
  • “Contrasting Mill and Sidgwick. A Development Analysis of the Value Theory of Classical Utilitarianism” (in German), in: Allgemeine Zeitschrift für Philosophie (2014) 39:2, 173-193.
  • “Should the Late Stage Demented be Punished for Past Crimes?”, in: Criminal Law and Philosophy (2013) 7, 137-150.
  • “Potentiality Arguments and the Definition of ‘Human Organism’”, in: American Journal of Bioethics (2013) 13:1, 33-34.
  • “Surprising Theses of Classical Utilitarianism. Henry Sidgwick’s Neglected Completion of Classical British Moral Philosophy” (in German), in: Archives for Philosophy of Law and Social Philosophy /Archiv für Rechts- und Sozialphilosophie (2012) 98: 4, 510-534. Archiv für Rechts- und Sozialphilosophie (2012) 98: 4, 510-534.

In Collections

  • “Who Should Take Care of Offenders with Dementia? Some Thoughts on Fading Selves and the
    Challenge of Responsibility Ascriptions“, in: Theories of the Self and Autonomy, Michael Kühler /
    Veselin Mitrović (Hg.), Cham: Springer 2020, S. 185-198.
  • “Prioritaristian Consequentialism?“ (in German), in: The Philosophy of Derek Parfit. With Responses by Parfit (German: Die Philosophie Derek Parfits. Mit Repliken von Parfit), Markus Rüther / Sebastian Muders / Matthias Hoesch (Hg.), Hamburg: Meiner 2018, 245-264.
  • “Releasing Prisoners with Dementia: Could there be a Recollection Requirement for Expressivist and Communicative Justifications of Punishment?“, in: Dementia and Subjectivity. Aesthetic, Literary and Philosophical Perspectives, Daniela Ringkamp / Leonie Süwolto (Hg.), Frankfurt a. M.: Peter Lang 2017, 241-249.
  • “Population Growth and Demographic Change” (in German), together with Alena Buyx, in: Handbook Bioethics (German: Handbuch Bioethik), Dieter Sturma and Bert Heinrichs (ed.), Stuttgart: Metzler 2015.
  • “Preventing Paternalism: An Accomplishment of Subjective Theories of the Good” (in German), in: Paternalism and Consequentialism (German: Paternalismus und Konsequentialismus), Michael Kühler and Alexa Nossek (ed.), Muenster: Mentis 2014, 179-98. In Hungarian: As autonómia és határai [Autonomy and its Limits], Annette Dufner / Sandor Kőmüves / Erzsébet Rózsa (Hg.), Debrecen: Debrecen University Press 2016, 171-195.
  • “Fairness and Efficiency in Conflict Cases: Do Numbers Count, After All?” (in German), together with Bettina Schöne-Seifert, Preprints of the Centre for Advanced Study in Bioethics, University of Muenster 2012, 1-15. Online preview
  • “The Non-Identity Problem: A Recurring Philosophical Issue in Medical Ethics and Legislation”, in: Meditor 2, Sándor Kőmüves (ed.), Debrecen: Debrecen University Press 2012, 168-176. In Hungarian: Meditor 2, 92-101.
  • “Does the Separateness of Persons Support Moderate Moral Side Constraints? A Summary”, in: Online Proceedings des XXII. Deutschen Kongresses für Philosophie, München 2011, 1-8. Online preview
  • “Inalienability and the Scope of Self-Regarding Rights. Some Thoughts about Claim Rights, Mandatory Rights, and Temporal Cut-off-Lines” (in German), in: Human Dignity and Modern Medical Technology (German: Menschenwürde und moderne Medizintechnik), Eric Hilgendorf, Jan Joerden, Natalia Petrillo and Felix Thiele (ed.), Baden-Baden: Nomos 2011, 249-260.
  • “How The Best Life Possible Can Be Bad: Some Deliberations on Intra-Personal Scope for Distributive Principles”, in: Brains and Persons. Contributions to the 8th International Congress of the Austrian Philosophical Association in Graz, Martina Fürst, Wolfgang Gombocz and Christian Hiebaum (ed.), Frankfurt: Ontos 2009, 353-362.
  • “Brain State Transfers and Autonomy”, in: Selected Papers Contributed to the Sections of GAP.6. Sixth International Congress of the Society for Analytic Philosophy, Berlin, 11. - 14. September 2006, Helen Bohse and Sven Walter (ed.), Paderborn: Mentis 2008, 308-316.

Reviews and Dictionary Entries

  • “A Consequentialism with Subjective Decision Criterion. Commentary to From Value to Rightness“ (in German), in: Zeitschrift für philosophische Forschung (2021), 75:4, 584-586.
  • “Utility and Justice in Triage Settings” (in German), in: Bundeszentrale für politische Bildung (Hg.): Dossier Bioethics (2021),
  • “The (Term) ‚I’“, with Michael Quante, in: Handbook of Autobiography and Autofiction, Vol. I: Theory and Concepts, Martina Wagner-Egelhaaf (ed.), Berlin: De Gruyter 2019, 300-304.
  • “Identity“, with Michael Quante, in: Handbook of Autobiography and Autofiction, Vol. I: Theory and Concepts, Martina Wagner-Egelhaaf (ed.), Berlin: De Gruyter 2019, 305-309.
  • “Personality“, with Michael Kühler / Michael Quante, in: Handbook of Autobiography and Autofiction, Vol. I: Theory and Concepts, Martina Wagner-Egelhaaf (ed.), Berlin: De Gruyter 2019, 372-377.
  • “Sincerity“, with Michael Kühler, in: Handbook of Autobiography and Autofiction, Vol. I: Theory and Concepts, Martina Wagner-Egelhaaf (ed.), Berlin: De Gruyter 2019, 398-401.
  • “Weyma Lübbe: Nonaggregationism”, in: Ethical Theory and Moral Practice (2017) 20, 209-212.
  • “Robert Nozick: Philosophical Explanations”, “Derek Parfit: Reasons and Persons”, “John Perry: Reference and Reflexivity”, “Sydney Shoemaker: Self-Knowledge and Self-Identity”, Bernard Williams: Problems of the Self”, in: Dictionary of Philosophical Writings (German: Kleines Werklexikon der Philosophie), Michael Quante (ed.), Stuttgart: Kröner 2012.
  • “Michael Quante: Person”, Ethical Theory and Moral Practice (2009) 12: 569-570.
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