Prof. ten Have

Henk ten Have

McAnulty College and Graduate School of Liberal Arts
Center for Healthcare Ethics

Fisher Hall 300
Phone: 412.396.4505


Ph.D., Philosophy, Leiden University, 1983, Medicine, Leiden University, 1978
M.D., Medicine, Leiden University, The Netherlands, 1976

Henk ten Have studied medicine and philosophy at Leiden University, the Netherlands. He received his medical degree in 1976 from Leiden University and his philosophy degree in 1983. He worked as a researcher in the Pathology Laboratory, University of Leiden (1976-1977), as a practising physician in the Municipal Health Services, City of Rotterdam (1978-1979), and as a Professor of Philosophy in the Faculty of Medicine and Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Limburg, Maastricht (1982-1991). From 1991 he was a Professor of Medical Ethics and the Director of the Department of Ethics, Philosophy and History of Medicine in the University Medical Centre Nijmegen, the Netherlands. In September 2003 he joined UNESCO as Director of the Division of Ethics of Science and Technology, working at the Headquarters in Paris, France. Since July 2010 he is Director of the Center for Healthcare Ethics at Duquesne University in Pittsburgh, USA. In 2011 he was appointed as Adjunct Professor at King Saud bin Abdulaziz University for Health Sciences, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.


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Dr. ten Have published Medische Ethiek (1998; 4th revised edition 2012), an ethics textbook for medical curricula (also translated in Lithuanian language) used in most medical schools in the Netherlands. His other books include Palliative Care in Europe. Concepts and Policies (Amsterdam, the Netherlands; IOS Press; 2001), Bioethics in a European Perspective (Dordrecht, the Netherlands; Kluwer Academic Publishers; 2001), The Ethics of Palliative Care. European Perspectives (Buckingham, UK; Open University Press; 2002), Ethics and Alzheimer Disease (Johns Hopkins University Press, Baltimore, 2004), and Death and Medical Power. An Ethical Analysis of Dutch Euthanasia Practice (Open University Press, 2005). At UNESCO he has been involved in a wide range of international activities in bioethics, such as capacity building on the basis of the Universal Declaration of Bioethics and Human Rights, particularly the establishment of national bioethics committees and the promotion of ethics teaching (with a current priority for Africa and the Arab Region). With UNESCO he published Environmental Ethics and International Policy (Paris, 2006), Nanotechnologies, Ethics and Politics (Paris, 2007), and The UNESCO Universal Declaration on Bioethics and Human Rights. Background, principles and application (Paris, 2009). In 2011, his experiences in UNESCO were published in the book (in Dutch): Bioethiek zonder grenzen. Mondialisering van gezondheid, ethiek en wetenschap (Bioethics without Borders. Globalisation of health, ethics and science; Valkhof Pers, Nijmegen, The Netherlands).

His recent publications include: The SAGE Handbook of Healthcare Ethics: Core and emerging issues (2011, SAGE Publishers, with co-editors Ruth Chadwick and Eric Meslin), Contemporary Catholic Healthcare Ethics (2013, Georgetown UP, with David Kelly and Gerard Magill), Handbook of Global Bioethics (2013, Springer Publishers, with co-editor Bert Gordijn), and Bioethics Education in a Global Perspective (Springer, 2014) He is Editor-in-Chief of the journal Medicine, Philosophy and Healthcare. Currently, he is directing and editing the Encyclopedia of Global Bioethics (scheduled to be published in 2016 with Springer) and editor-in-chief of the new International Journal of Ethics Education.


Dr. ten Have has been elected as a member of the Real Academia Nacional de Medicina (in Madrid, Spain, in 1995) as well as of the Royal Dutch Academy of Science (in Amsterdam, the Netherlands, in 2005). In 2004 he was elected as Fellow of the Hastings Center. From 2007 to 2010 he served as an Honorary Research Professor in the School of Philosophy, University of Tasmania, Australia. In March 2008 he was awarded the title of Doctor Honoris Causa by the Medical University of Pleven in Bulgaria. In September 2008 he received the Oscar M.Ruebhausen Visiting Professorship, Department of Bioethics, Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland. In September 2008 he was awarded the Ethos Prize for Bioethics, sponsored by Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation, Lisbon, Portugal. The Bangladesh Bioethics Society appointed him as ‘Lifetime Honorary Member' in January 2015.


Dr. ten Have is involved in many public debates concerning end-of-life ethics, palliative care, euthanasia, drug addiction, genetics, choices in health care, health systems ethics, and resource allocation. Initially, his research has focused on ethical issues in end-of-life care. He was the coordinator of the European Commission funded Project, 'Palliative Care Ethics'. Over the last decade, he has been particularly involved in debates on global bioethics, emphasizing the need to create bioethics infrastructures (teaching programs, ethics committees, legislation) in developing countries. He is editor-in-chief of the Handbook of Global Bioethics, of the book series Advances in Global Bioethics, and the upcoming Encyclopedia of Global Bioethics. He is also editor-in-chief of the journal Medicine, Health Care and Philosophy. He was co-founder and secretary of the European Society for Philosophy of Medicine and Health Care. He also is one of the founding members of the International Association for Education in Ethics and serves as its Executive Secretary since 2010. He is a member of the Advisory Board of the following scholarly journals in the field of ethics: Theoretical Medicine, Healthcare Ethics Committee Forum, Health Care Analysis, Ethical Perspectives, Etica per le Professioni, Annals of Bioethics, The New Review of Bioethics, Revista Latinoamericano de Bioetics, Polska Medycyna Paliatywa, Humanitas - Humanidades Medicas, Szience Umane e Sanita, Journal of Bioethical Inquiry, Krytyka Lekarska, Turkiye Klinikleri Journal of Medical Sciences, the Kennedy Institute of Ethics Journal, Journal International de Bioetique, the Colombian Journal of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, Jahr, and Mirabilia Medicinae Journal. He also is a member of the Ethical Issues Review Panel (since 2006) of WADA (World Anti-Doping Agency), member of the Ethics Curriculum Advisory Committee, King Abdullah International Medical Research Center, King Saud Bin Abdulaziz University for Health Sciences, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia (since 2007), member of International Board of the International Centre for Ethics in the Sciences and Humanities (IZEW), University of Tübingen, Germany (since 2012), member of the Science and Ethics Advisory Group (SEAG), Roche-Genentech (since 2012), and member of the Advisory Board of the Encyclopedia of Islamic Bioethics (Georgetown University, School of Foreign Service in Qatar) (since 2013).

He is currently working on two book manuscripts: Vulnerability - Challenges to Global Bioethics and Global Bioethics - An Introduction.