• CSU
  • University of Melbourne


Economics and Innovation

The program focuses on central ethical issues arising in the economic sphere. These include the justice of national and global economic arrangements, such as taxation, fiscal, labour and property law, and financial and trading regimes. Specific areas include markets in education and the economics of climate change. The program also examines corporate responsibilities in the spheres of finance, profitability, sustainability and human rights, and distributive justice. It aims to make a major contribution to the ethical understanding of innovation and technology. Program members realize that technical, scientific, legal and social science expertise is vital, and work with practitioners in the relevant professions.


Research in this program examines a range of issues that arise from the nature and value of the natural, and also the artificial environment, and our relationship with them. These include issues of justice and responsibility in relation to possession of, access to, and exploitation of land, water, and other (renewable and non-renewable) natural resources, ethical issues in climate change mitigation and adaptation, including those involving geo-engineering, and the human role in the anthropocene. 


This program addresses issues in bioethics, healthcare ethics, and public health ethics. This includes conceptual work on the ethics of procreation, the ethics of providing medical treatment to vulnerable groups such as children, dual use issues in the biological sciences, and the distinction between medical treatment and human enhancement. It also includes work on practical ethical issues arising in healthcare, including moral and regulatory challenges of experimental therapies, difficulties facing medical research ethics committees, and the problem of determining when conscientious objections are legitimate in healthcare.


This program addresses a variety of conceptual and practical ethical issues that are generated for the most part by the phenomena of war, humanitarian intervention, terrorism, crime and corruption. These include the nature and application of Just War Theory, morality and self-defense, principles of criminal liability, justification for police use of force, ethics of counter-terrorism tactics, anti-corruption systems and ethical issues in cyber-security.


2015 Annual Report [.pdf]

CAPPE Events

Seminar 28th September

Norvo Lo - La Trobe University

This paper discusses social attitudes towards feeding neighbourhood wild birds. It connects different and often opposing attitudes on the issue to three schools of philosophy regarding animals and nature. These include animal liberation ethics, wilderness preservation ethics,and anthropocentrism. 

Contact CAPPE for more information.


Professor Seumas Miller

Institutional Corruption and The Capital Markets  More

Fixing the Fix - Benchmark Reform and the Future of Financial Regulation  More

Designing-in-Ethics: A Compulsary Retirement Savings System  More

Dr Stephen Clarke

On Religious Violence, ABC Western Plains 'Mornings', radio interview  More

Past media events


Potential students are encouraged to contact a Postgraduate Co-ordinator for advice prior to submitting an application. 

Inquiries regarding Research degrees (PhD and MA) should be directed to one of the following:

Laura Schroeter (

Steve Clarke (

Inquiries regarding Masters by coursework degrees should be directed to one of the following:

Chris Cordner (

Tom Campbell (


The Centre for Applied Philosophy and Public Ethics (CAPPE) can provide supervision to PhD, MPhil and MA by research students across a wide range of topics. CAPPE members have research interests in traditional and central areas of philosophy including philosophy of law, social and political philosophy, normative and meta-ethical theory, moral psychology, philosophy of action, philosophy of science, cognitive science, free will and responsibility, and personal identity as well as in CAPPE’s core program areas of political violence and state sovereignty; biotechnology; information technology and nanotechnology; criminal justice ethics: business and professional ethics and welfare ethics.

Research areas of PhD candidates currently supervised by CAPPE members include: tribal identity and rights; moral particularism; the neuroscience of moral judgment, privacy and trust in information technology; media ethics; ethics and electronic democracy; the ethics of humanitarian intervention; political violence; trading body parts; the commercial use of animals. Current Research Student Profiles

University of Melbourne
Andrew Alexandra Intellectual Property, Pacifism
Professional Ethics, Hobbes
Professor Tony Coady Political Violence, Terrorism
Moralism and Realism
Dr Daniel Halliday Political Philosophy, Egalitarian Justice, Justice and Public Policy
Charles Sturt University (CSU)
Professor Tom Campbell Justice and Human Rights,
Business Ethics, Ethical Positivism
Dr Steve Clarke Medical Ethics, Philosophy of Science
Philosophy of Social Psychology
Professor Clive Hamilton Ethics of Climate Change, Idealist Philosophy
Post-secular Ethics, Consumption & Identity Formation 
Professor Seumas Miller Professional and Applied Ethics
Philosophy of Action
Professor Suzanne Uniacke Ethics of War 
Medico-legal Ethics
Bioethics, Punishment, Responsibility
Intentions and Consequences
Criminal Justice Ethics