Arthur Caplan's Headshot

Arthur Caplan

- Panelist Blurb

Arthur L. Caplan is currently Professor of Bioethics, Chair of the Department of Medical Ethics and Director of the Center for Bioethics at the University of Pennsylvania. His research interests include transplantation research ethics, genetics, reproductive technologies, health policy and general bioethics. Caplan writes a regular column on bioethics for and is a frequent guest and commentator on National Public Radio, CNN, ABC's Nightline, MSNBC, the New York Times, Washington Post and many other media outlets. He is the author or editor of over 20 books and 500 papers in professional journals in philosophy, medicine, health policy and the biological sciences.

Caplan believes that biotechnology affects virtually every aspect of our daily lives and he is on the leading edge of debates in science ethics. He draws meaningful connections between seemingly unrelated topics, helps clarify the most complex ethical issues - from genetics to lifestyle drugs, from the consequences of reversing aging and retooling the human brain, to the applications and ethics of cloning - and explains their impact.

He has served on a number of national and international committees, including as Chair of the Advisory Committee to the United Nations on Human Cloning. Caplan serves on the Dupont Biotechnology Council and is a consultant to many companies and patient organizations.

Prior to coming to UPenn in 1994, Caplan was Director of the Center for Biomedical Ethics as well as Professor of Philosophy and of Surgery at the University of Minnesota, 1987-1994. He was Associate Director of the Hasting Center from 1985-87 and Associate for the Humanities at the Hastings from 1977-84.

Books include, Who Owns Life? (2002), Finding Common Ground: Ethics and Assisted Suicide (2001), Ethics and Organ Transplants (1999), Am I My Brother's Keeper? (1998), Due Consideration: Controversy in an Age of Medical Miracles (1997), Moral Matters: Ethical Issues in Medicine and the Life Sciences (1994), Prescribing Our Future: Ethical Challenges in Genetic Counseling (1993), If I were a Rich Man Could I Buy A Pancreas? and Other Essays on Medical Ethics (1992), and many others.

NOTE: Bio is as it appeared in the Forum program from December 3, 2004.