Michael M. Burgess is Professor and research Chair in Biomedical Ethics at the University of British Columbia, Canada, with appointments in the W. Maurice Young Centre for Applied Ethics in the School of Population and Public Health, and in Medical Genetics.  For 2019-2024, he is Associate Provost, Strategy at the UBC’s Okanagan campus.


Burgess combines ethical and social theory with social science methods related to policy in health care, health research and biotechnology. He is primarily interested in identifying neglected or novel perspectives to assure that the theoretical approaches and recommendations engage with poorly understood or disenfranchised perspectives. The focus of his interdisciplinary collaboration is to engage various “publics” in dialogue about the role of health- and biotechnologies in society, to inform policy and to sustain continued discussion on important ethical issues. His research has been funded by SSHRC, CIHR, Genome Canada and Genome BC, as well as NGOs and industry contracts.


Burgess’ graduate supervision has been primarily in the Interdisciplinary Studies Graduate Program (Vancouver), the graduate programs of the School of Population and Public Health, and most recently the Okanagan Interdisciplinary Graduate Studies program. He is not accepting new graduate student supervisions due to his administrative position.


Most recently Burgess’ research has focused on science and technology policy and public engagement based on theories of deliberative democracy. In collaboration with Kieran O’Doherty, his research has focused on developing approaches to public deliberation, having led or supported over 25 events in Canada, Europe, Australia the US. The majority of these deliberations have been on biobanks, the use of data in health systems and research, and funding decisions in health care. Current research projects extends public deliberation to policy issues related to biobanks, AI and big data, animal welfare in food policy, CRISPR, and theoretical work on concepts of diversity and trustworthiness.

View Dr. Burgess’ CV here.


Contact information:

Email: michael.burgess@ubc.ca

Phone: 250 807-8216

Physical Office: Provost Office, ADM119D, UBC Okanagan

Mailing address:

1138 Alumni Avenue, 119 ADM

Kelowna, BC  | V1V 1V7 Canada