Deadline: March 03, 2017

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Rice Family Fellowship in Bioethics and the Humanities

The Hastings Center seeks applications for a 1-year, full-time fellowship position.

With generous support from the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) and private donors, The Hastings Center is creating a Humanities Research Initiative.  The aims of the Initiative are to deepen the Center’s core commitment to humanities-based scholarship in bioethics and to nurture future leaders in this area.  To advance those aims, we will, on an annual basis, bring in a junior scholar both to do their own work and to help Center scholars draw on the resources of the humanities to inform ongoing research at the Center.

The Humanities Research Initiative is now looking to award the inaugural Rice Family Fellowship in Bioethics and the Humanities.  The successful candidate will be no more than 5 years beyond dissertation studies in the humanities.  Following the NEH’s definition, we include within the humanities not only traditional disciplines like philosophy and history, but also “those aspects of social sciences which have humanistic content and employ humanistic methods.”

The successful candidate will show the potential to creatively and energetically contribute to the Initiative’s theme this year: “The Gift and Weight of Genomic Knowledge.” We are open to many more questions, but among the ones we will be asking: What is the relationship between information and knowledge in the genomic context?  What is the relationship between “sharing knowledge with persons” and “inflicting knowledge on persons”? And what is the difference between knowledge and wisdom in the context of genomics?

Erik Parens, a senior research scholar at the Center, will lead the Humanities Research Initiative.  A primary responsibility of the Fellow will be to work with Parens and other Center researchers to conceive a conference and a collection of essays, which bring insights from the humanities to illuminate questions that arise in the context of gathering and sharing genomic knowledge.  The conference will occur, and the collection of essays will be submitted for publication, not later than 6 months after the conclusion of the Fellow’s year-long stay at the Center.

In addition to having a strong background in the humanities and a keen interest in developments in genomics, the successful candidate will enjoy working in a small, highly interdisciplinary and collegial institution in Garrison, NY, which is a 75-minute train ride from NYC, up the Hudson River.  Candidates must already have the right to work in the U.S. (e.g. they must be U.S. citizens or permanent residents).

To apply: Upload a letter of application describing your intellectual background and fit for this year’s theme, along with your CV, one writing sample, and the names and contact information for two references here. Questions sent to will be answered promptly.

Application deadline: March 3, 2017.  Applications will be reviewed as they are received.  The Fellowship will begin in September of 2017.  It includes a salary of $55,000, plus health insurance, generous vacation, sick leave and holiday schedules.  The Hastings Center is an equal opportunity employer, committed to building a diverse staff and creating an inclusive environment for all employees.  For more information about The Hastings Center, visit:

The Hastings Center is an independent, nonprofit, nonpartisan institution that since 1969 has been a leader in research, education, and policy recommendations on the ethical and social impact of advances in medicine, health care, and biotechnology.

fellowship opportunity