Publications / Projects

Education, training

Stella Reiter-Theil studied Psychology and Philosophy, graduations and interdisciplinary PhD at the University of Tübingen, Germany. During her university studies, she served as a junior researcher at the Research Department, “Psychotherapeutisches Zentrum Stuttgart-Sonnenberg”/director: Prof. Dr. Helmut Enke. As a post-graduate / postdoc she became visiting research fellow and University Lecturer at the University of Vienna, Austria. She also trained in Science Journalism (in Vienna) and in Psychotherapy (in Vienna and Freiburg).


Stella Reiter-Theil received competitive scholarships from renowned institutions such as the German Science Foundation (DFG), the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD), the Robert Bosch Foundation.

The German Science Foundation (DFG) awarded her with the "Heinz Maier Leibnitz-Preis" in Practical Philosophy (1988).

She received her "Habilitation and Venia Legendi" for Medical Ethics, at the University of Freiburg, Germany (1999).

Several doctoral dissertations / publications under her supervision have received awards (four since 2009).

Leadership and institution building in Medical Ethics

1990 — 1995
Secretary General and (founding) Executive Director, Academy for Ethics in Medicine (AEM), University of Goettingen, Germany; in charge of national and European task forces; numerous projects in medical ethics.

1995 — 2000
Research Director at the Center for Ethics and Law in Medicine (ZERM), University of Freiburg, Germany; development of a clinical ethics consultation service to the University Hospital; ethics consultant to the organ transplantation center, esp. living kidney donation. Organisation of the monthly Ethics Colloquium of the University Hospital Freiburg.

she co-organized together with Prof. Dr. Ulrich Tröhler the World conference on Ethics Codes in Medicine and Biotechnology, Freiburg.

Numerous memberships on ethics committees, such as of the local (Research Ethics Committee), of the National Ethics committee (“Ethikbeirat”; Federal Department of Health, Germany), of the International Ethics Committee CIOMS, WHO.

Since 2000
initiative and leadership for the ICCEC series “International Conference: Clinical ethics Consultation”, together with Prof. George Agich, PhD, since 2008 annual conference.

election, ANNE FRANK foundational Ethics Chair, Director of the newly founded Institute for Applied Ethics and Medical Ethics, University of Basel, Switzerland.

2008 — 2011
Director of the Department, Medical and Health Ethics (Fachbereich Medizin- und Gesundheitsethik, MGE), Medical Faculty, University Hospital Basel.

2011 — present
Prof. Reiter-Theil is responsible for the Unit of Clinical Ethics Support and Accompanying Research / University Hospital Basel.

Interdisciplinary research program (competitive grant projects)

Stella Reiter-Theil’s research focuses are on: end-of-life issues, informed consent, ethical difficulties at the bedside, ethics support services / evaluation, fairness of resource allocation; research methodology and methodology of developing clinical ethical guidelines; her research includes main clinical fields such geriatrics, intensive care, neonatology, neurology, obstetrics, oncology, psychiatry / psychotherapy, reproductive medicine, and specifically: end-of-life care, vulnerable patients and their relatives.

She developed the innovative PhD Program Medical and Health Ethics at the Medical Faculty Basel; since the establishment of the regulation in 2008, 5 PhD promotions have been completed under her supervision successfully. For her interdisciplinary research projects and groups she raised considerable competitive grants from the DFG, Bonn, European Commission, Brussels, Robert Bosch Foundation, Stuttgart, Swiss National Foundation, Berne, and several others. Stella Reiter-Theil has published on a wide range of topics, see her publications.

Special functions and honors (selection)

Stella Reiter-Theil is serving as an independent ethical expert for various institutions, such as national research councils, international research consortia etc.

  • Independent Ethical Advisor, e.g. to EU FP7 Projects such as SEYLE (Saving and Empowering Young Lives in Europe); PI: Prof. Danuta Wasserman, Karolinska University (2008 -).
  • International Advisory Board Member, Dutch Science Organization, to the national research program “responsible innovation” (2008-2009);  
  • Member of the European Association for Endoscopic Surgery Consensus Conference 'Innovation Management in Surgery' for the development of Guidelines (2009-2010);
  • Chair, Ad-hoc-Committee "Ethics-Charta" (2007-08), German Section, Int. Society, Study of Pain; re-elected for revising the Ethics Charta, 2011;
  • Editorial Board Member of the European Journal: “Medicine, Health Care and Philosophy”; “Ethik in der Medizin”;
  • Reviewer for numerous international journals as well as research funding institutions;
  • Member of Senate as elected Delegate of the Medical Faculty Basel, Swiss Academy of Medical Sciences;
  • Advisory board / founding member, Clinical Ethics Consultation Training Program organized by Klinikum Nürnberg, Germany (2005 -).
  • Member of European Clinical Ethics Consultation Network (ECEN; founded 2005, in Basel);
  • Organization of numerous conferences and symposia (more than 50 since 1990).

Teaching and training, curricular responsibilities

2011 — present
Teaching Science Ethics in the Faculty of Psychology, Basel

2010 — present
Supervision of Master theses, Medicine, Medical Faculty Basel

2009 — 2010
Ethics teaching in the Curriculum of Nursing Science, Medical Faculty Basel

2006 — present
Teaching Science Ethics in the Curriculum of Nanoscience / PhD / Bachelor, Science Faculty, Basel (in collab. with Nicola Stingelin, Ralf Stutzki

2005 — present
Teaching and (founding) leadership: Clinical Ethics Consultation Training Program organized by Klinikum Nürnberg, Germany (Cekib); in collaboration with Akademie für Ethik in der Medizin, Medizinische Hochschule Hannover.

2005 — present
Developing, teaching and supervision, PhD Program Medical and Health Ethics, Medical Faculty Basel

2001 — present
Ethics teaching in the Bachelor and Master Curricula of Medicine, Medical Faculties of Basel and Berne

2001 — 2008
Curricular development, coordination and teaching, Transfaculty Program of Applied Ethics, University of Basel

2000 — 2008
Curricular development, steering committee member, visiting professor, European Master in Bioethics, in collaboration with the Universities of Leuven, Belgium, Nijmegen, The Netherlands, and Padua, Italy

1990 — 1992
Curricular development and University Lecturer for Ethics in Psychology at several Universities, e.g. University of Salzburg, Austria: "Institute for Psychology", director: Prof. Dr. Urs Baumann

1987 — 1990
Curricular development and University Lecturer for Ethics in Psychotherapy at the University of Vienna, Austria: "Klinik für Tiefenpsychologie und Psychotherapie", director: Prof. Dr. Hans Strotzka