Graduate Fellowship in Applied Ethics


Supporting UBC graduate students working in applied ethics

The fellowship will provide a one-time annual stipend of $20,000 plus a research-related allowance of $1,500, as well as access to office space at the CAE in the Klinck Building on UBC Vancouver campus. Applicants from UBC Okanagan are also welcomed and efforts will be made to include successful UBC Okanagan fellowship holders in CAE activities via teleconference and/or provision for a visit to the UBC campus.

The period of the fellowship will be the 2020 academic year (i.e., September 1, 2020 to August 31, 2021). Applicants must be enrolled in a graduate program at UBC during this period.

Relevant topics for this fellowship include but are not limited to: bioethics, business ethics, environmental ethics, public health ethics, and health inequities.

Students receiving other scholarships may receive a top-up from the Graduate Fellowship in Applied Ethics to a total of $20,000.

Expectations for graduate fellows:

  • Regularly meet with a CAE faculty member who advises on this project.
  • Interact with other CAE fellows and attend CAE events.
  • Organize a lecture by a visiting scholar in their area of interest (supported by $2,500 from the CAE’s Visiting Scholar Fund).
  • Give a presentation of their work-in-progress at UBC.
  • Write a dissertation or thesis chapter or publishable article on a topic of applied ethics.

Application procedures

Deadline: February 29, 2020

Applications should be emailed to the CAE Director David Silver ( and should include:

  • A letter describing the research project the applicant intends to pursue and its connection to applied ethics. This letter should also indicate which CAE regular faculty member or members the applicant expects to work with on this project. (CAE regular faculty members are: Mike Burgess, Susan Cox, Anita Ho, David Silver, and Daniel Steel.) Applicants are strongly encouraged to contact a potentially interested CAE faculty prior to submitting their applications.
  • A sample of the applicant’s written work.
  • The applicant’s curriculum vitae.
  • Transcripts from undergraduate and graduate studies (if applicable).
  • Two letters of recommendation, one of which should be from the applicant’s supervisor.

Awards adjudication

Applications will be assessed by an awards adjudication committee comprised of regular CAE faculty. The criteria for assessment are:

  • Quality of the candidate’s scholarly record overall (including CV, transcripts, sample of writing and letters of reference).
  • Identification of a relevant applied ethics issue or problem to be undertaken during fellowship and rationale supporting the proposed work.
  • Fit with a regular CAE faculty member who is willing to supervise the student/project.
  • Identification of specific outputs that will arise from fellowship period (such as publishable papers, conference presentations, dissertation chapter).
  • Probability of making a contribution to CAE (as per expectations for fellowship holders).

Graduate Fellows for 2017-2018

Maya Lefkowich

Maya Lefkowich is a PhD student in the Interdisciplinary Studies Graduate Program.

She holds a Master of Public Health degree from the Dalla Lana School of Public Health (at the University of Toronto) where she focused on masculinities and men’s health. Maya is now pursuing research on empowerment journalism – a collaborative approach to reporting on/with marginalized communities. Through her PhD research and Graduate Fellowship in Ethics, Maya will draw on Indigenous, arts-based, and journalism perspectives to explore the ethical implications of solidarity, collaboration, representation, and digital storytelling in First Nations communities in Northern Canada. Originally from Toronto, Maya loves living so close to mountains and the ocean, and is very excited to explore more of Northern Canada as part of her research.

Jennica Nichols

Professionally, I am passionate about collaborative methodologies that support meaningful involvement of patients and family members in health service design and evaluation.

I started the Interdisciplinary Ph.D. program at UBC in 2016 with interests in research-based theatre (RBT), evaluating arts-based research, primary care delivery, and diabetes self-management. I have a B.Sc. in molecular biology with a minor in sexuality and family (University of Waterloo) and a MPH in epidemiology and global health (University of Toronto). Before coming to UBC, I worked for five years evaluating health programs and services at community, provincial, and national levels. Personally, I am passionate about hiking, hole-in-the-wall restaurants, the Washington Capitals, and new adventures.

Health is anchored in a strong bioethics tradition where researchers and practitioners must work in ways that minimizes harm and ensures informed consent of research participants. What does this mean within the context of RBT? As a newer methodology in health, this question has been largely unexplored. During my fellowship, I will be working with Dr. Susan Cox to create ethical guideposts that identify important ethical decision points when developing and performing RBT. The aim of work is to support a more explicit focus on ethics in future RBT projects.

Itai Bavli

Itai Bavli is a PhD Candidate at the University of British Columbia’s Interdisciplinary Studies Graduate Program in the fields of public health, public policy and applied ethics. His research focuses on public health errors and post-market regulations in the United States and Canada. He has recently been awarded the W. Maurice Young Centre for Applied Ethics Graduate Fellowship for a proposal titled: “OxyContin abuse—Ethical issues regarding post-market regulation by the FDA and Health Canada.” He investigates how much evidence – and what kind of evidence – should be sufficient for the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and Health Canada to justify regulatory action in response to a (potential) public health error.

Mr. Bavli is also a researcher at the Gertner Institute for Epidemiology and Health Policy Research in Israel, where he is part of a research group that investigates the response of health authorities in the United States and Israel to the adverse effects of radiation treatment. He received his BA (Political Science and International Relations) and MA (Political Science) from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.

Bavli, I. “Informing the Public of the Late Health Effects of Radiation Treatment
in the United States” [in Hebrew]. In: Shvarts S., Sadetzki S. (editors), Ringworm, Ben Gurion University publication house, (to be published 2018).

Shvarts, S., Bar-Oz, I., Shachar, E., Levi, S., Samchi, S., Bavli, I. “Ringworm In Israel” [in Hebrew]. In: Shvarts S., Sadetzki S. (editors), Ringworm, Ben Gurion University publication house, (to be published 2018).

Bavli, I. and Shvarts, S. “Deadly Medicine” - Michael Reese’s Pandora’s
Box and the Campaign to Warn the Public of the Late Health Effects of Ionizing Radiation in The United States (under review [R&R], AJPH).

Bavli, I. and Steel D. “On Community Epistemic Capacity.” Social Epistemology Review and Reply Collective 4, no. 12 (2015): 34-38.

Adam Kay

Adam is in his final year of doctoral studies in Organizational Behavior at the UBC Sauder School of Business.

He has an undergraduate degree in Commerce and a Juris Doctorate from the University of Victoria, as well as a Masters of Laws from Osgoode Hall Law School. Prior to pursuing his doctoral work, Adam was a multinational biotech business manager, an international trade and investment lawyer, and an executive coach and consultant. His current research interests include mindfulness, moral identity, pro-social giving, and corporate social responsibility. Adam’s research has been published in peer-reviewed journals with the Journal of Personality & Social Psychology and Academy of Management Perspectives, as well as in book chapters with Routledge, Guilford Press, and Oxford University Press. As a graduate fellow of the W. Maurice Young Centre for Applied Ethics, Adam will be examining the effect of mindfulness on moral identity, and its downstream effects on deviant workplace behaviors.