© 2015

Machine Medical Ethics

  • Simon Peter van Rysewyk
  • Matthijs Pontier


  • First research book exclusively dedicated to machine medical ethics

  • Interdisciplinary and cutting-edge focus

  • High societal relevance

  • Subject is increasingly receiving media attention


Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xiii
  2. Theoretical Foundations of Machine Medical Ethics

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 1-1
    2. Tatjana Kochetkova
      Pages 3-15
    3. Susan Leigh Anderson, Michael Anderson
      Pages 67-77
    4. Joshua Lucas, Gary Comstock
      Pages 79-92
    5. Simon Peter van Rysewyk, Matthijs Pontier
      Pages 93-110
    6. Christopher Charles Santos-Lang
      Pages 111-127
  3. Contemporary Challenges in Machine Medical Ethics: Justice, Rights and the Law

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 129-129
  4. Contemporary Challenges in Machine Medical Ethics: Decision-Making, Responsibility and Care

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 179-179
    2. Julia Inthorn, Marco Elio Tabacchi, Rudolf Seising
      Pages 181-206
    3. Ryan Tonkens
      Pages 207-221
    4. Blay Whitby
      Pages 223-232
  5. Contemporary Challenges in Machine Medical Ethics: Medical Machine Technologies and Models

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 255-255

About this book


The essays in this book, written by researchers from both humanities and sciences, describe various theoretical and experimental approaches to adding medical ethics to a machine in medical settings.

Medical machines are in close proximity with human beings, and getting closer: with patients who are in vulnerable states of health, who have disabilities of various kinds, with the very young or very old, and with medical professionals. In such contexts, machines are undertaking important medical tasks that require emotional sensitivity, knowledge of medical codes, human dignity, and privacy. As machine technology advances, ethical concerns become more urgent: should medical machines be programmed to follow a code of medical ethics? What theory or theories should constrain medical machine conduct? What design features are required? Should machines share responsibility with humans for the ethical consequences of medical actions? How ought clinical relationships involving machines to be modeled? Is a capacity for empathy and emotion detection necessary? What about consciousness?

This collection is the first book to address these 21st-century concerns.


Artificial Intelligence Machine Ethics Medical Ethics Philosophical Ethics Robotics

Editors and affiliations

  • Simon Peter van Rysewyk
    • 1
  • Matthijs Pontier
    • 2
  1. 1.Graduate Institute of Humanities in MedicineTaipei Medical University, University of Tasmania, Dept of philosophy, Schl of HumanitiesTaipei CityTaiwan
  2. 2.The Centre for Advanced Media ResearchVU University AmsterdamAmsterdamThe Netherlands

About the editors

Simon van Rysewyk is a University Associate in the Department of Philosophy, School of Humanities, University of Tasmania. He received his PhD in Philosophy from the University of Tasmania in 2013, and from 2013 to 2014 he was a Taiwan National Science Council Post-Doctoral Fellow in the Brain and Consciousness Research Center and Graduate Institute of Medical Humanities, Taipei Medical University, Taiwan. His interests are pain, phenomenology, experiential research methods, and medical ethics. His homepage is here, and he can be contacted at

Bibliographic information

  • Book Title Machine Medical Ethics
  • Editors Simon Peter van Rysewyk
    Matthijs Pontier
  • Series Title Intelligent Systems, Control and Automation: Science and Engineering
  • Series Abbreviated Title Intelligent Systems, Cont. (formerly: Microprocessor)
  • DOI
  • Copyright Information Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2015
  • Publisher Name Springer, Cham
  • eBook Packages Engineering Engineering (R0)
  • Hardcover ISBN 978-3-319-08107-6
  • Softcover ISBN 978-3-319-34997-8
  • eBook ISBN 978-3-319-08108-3
  • Series ISSN 2213-8986
  • Series E-ISSN 2213-8994
  • Edition Number 1
  • Number of Pages XIII, 369
  • Number of Illustrations 8 b/w illustrations, 11 illustrations in colour
  • Topics Robotics and Automation
    Artificial Intelligence
    Health Psychology
  • Buy this book on publisher's site
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