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Institute of Applied ethics

The world is a confused place in which there are constant tensions between what is convenient, what is conventional, and what is right.

Institute of Applied Ethics

Since it was created in 2004, the Institute of Applied Ethics has taken up the challenge of making sense of these disparate clashes, and conflicts, so as to identify ways ethics can play a more prominent role in the real world.

We organise an annual programme of seminars, conferences and symposia. We also fund travel and conference attendance, where appropriate and supportive of the Institute's aims.

Contact us

Telephone +44 (0)1482 465775

The Approach

We bring together complementary interests across the University to provide a supportive and creative forum. This allows for the empirical grounding and rigorous theoretical input necessary for research into applied ethics. We interpret applied ethics broadly, as the application of ethical considerations, reasons, principles, values and ideals to any policy or practice (personal, social or professional) for the purpose of evaluating that policy or practice on ethical grounds.

The Institute draws together over 100 research associates, spread across multiple disciplines at the University of Hull, as well as academics at other institutions. We welcome individuals with relevant research or teaching interests who are interested in becoming associates. Get in touch to find out more.



  • To carry out research into the applied ethics around areas including social justice, leadership, the environment, military issues, healthcare, criminal and restorative justice, global justice, poverty, and inter-generational justice and migration
  • To support, facilitate and encourage research bid applications - establishing new funding streams and developing new themes for future research projects
  • To engage in deliberation on ethics both within and outside the university, engaging practitioners, faith groups and the business community

The Impact

The Institute of Applied Ethics (IAE_ has initiated many impact-oriented projects since its creation in 2004. Some of the most recent ones are listed below. The IAE’s research has had significant impact. For example, the research of the Military Ethics Education group (MEEN) has led to changes in the teaching of ethics education in military and war colleges in Europe, North America, Australia and Israel. Moreover, it has led to the inclusion of explicit ethical considerations in training and pre-deployment briefings within the armed forces of the relevant countries. Both types of impact have been achieved through publications, not least as those publications have formed the explicit basis of discussion at specially organised targeted conferences and other teaching events. Our other projects are having equally significant impacts in various other areas of applied ethics.


The Common Good: Ethics and Rights in Cyber Security (ERCS)
Military Ethics Education Network (MEEN)
  • All projects

    The Common Good: Ethics and Rights in Cyber Security (ERCS)

    This multidisciplinary, three-year project investigated the balance between security and ethics in digital governance and attracted £198,150 in ESRC funding. It generated many publications, a film festival (Digital Dystopias) and Open Campus lectures ('Spies, Trolls, Drones' and 'Polls: Being(s) in Cyberspace').

    Find out more.

    Military Ethics Education Network (MEEN)

    This three-year research project was funded by the Leverhulme Trust to examine different approaches taken to ethics in the military in 11 democratic countries. (Leverhulme Trust ref: F/00 181/O (£82,163).

    Exclusion and Integration in the UK and Japan

    The IAE is a lead partner in an international network of researchers working on comparative issues of social justice in the UK and Japan. The work focuses on issues of social exclusion and possible approaches to social integration. It has been supported previously by the Daiwa Anglo-Japanese Foundation.

Past events

Business School
Robot arm

Advancing Freedom & Social Justice
UK Flag
  • Outputs and publications

    Selected IAE publications and presentations since 2014 by co-directors. Visit Worktribe to view all outputs.

    Phil Bielby

    Bielby, P. (2019). ‘Not ‘us’ and ‘them’: towards a normative legal theory of mental health vulnerability’. International Journal of Law in Context, vol. 15(1), pp. 51-67.

    Bielby, P. (2016). ‘Justifying mental health rights from a Gewirthian perspective’. In P. Bauhn (ed.) Gewirthian Perspectives on Human Rights (Routledge Studies in American Philosophy), London: Routledge, pp. 174-190.

    Bielby, P. (2014). ‘Research on Patients with Dementia’. In: J. Herring, C. Foster and I. Doron (eds.) The Law and Ethics of Dementia. Oxford: Hart Publishing, pp. 363-380.

    Bielby, P. (2014). ‘Ulysses Arrangements in Psychiatric Treatment: Towards Proposals for Their Use Based on ‘Sharing’ Legal Capacity.Health Care Analysis: An International Journal of Health Care Philosophy and Policy, vol. 22(2), pp. 114-142.

    James Connelly

    Carrick D, Connelly J and Whetham D (eds) (2017), Making the Military Moral, Routledge.

    Connelly J and Goodman M (2018), ‘The public interest environmental law group: from USA to Europe’, Environmental Politics, Published online 19 Feb 2018. DOI: 10.1080/09644016.2018.1438789.

    Connelly J (2017), ‘On Making the Military Moral’, inCarrick D, Connelly J and Whetham D (eds), Making the Military Moral, Routledge.

    Peter Cserne

    Cserne P (2018), ‘Paternalism and Contract Law’ inGrill K and Hanna J (eds), The Routledge Handbook of the Philosophy of Paternalism, Abingdon, Routledge.

    Cserne P (2018), ‘Les nudges sont-ils des outils extra-juridiques?’ in ,sous la dir. Malik Bozzo-Rey et Anne Brunon-Ernst (eds), Nudges et normativités: Généalogies, Concepts et Applications, Paris, Hermann.

    Cserne P (2017), ‘Behavioural Law and Economics as Litmus TestŒconomia. History / Methodology / Philosophy 7, 3, 305–329.

    Antony Hatzistavrou

    Hatzistavrou A (2018), Authority and Expertise in Plato and Aristotle, Routledge (forthcoming 2018).

    Hatzistavrou A (2017), 'Ruling and Being ruled' at the Greek Ideas of Office and Rule Carlyle Lectures Workshop, Princeton University 1st December, 2017.

    Hatzistavrou A (2018), 'Plato and the Utopia within us', Yorkshire Network for Ancient Philosophy, 11th May 2018.

    Gerry Johnstone

    Johnstone, G. and Brennan, I. (2019, forthcoming) Building Bridges: Prisoners, Crime Victims and Restorative Justice (Den Haag: Eleven International Publishing).

    Johnstone, G. (2018) ‘Restorative Justice and the Therapeutic Tradition: Looking into the Future’ pp. 395-408 in T. Gavrielides (ed.) Routledge International Handbook of Restorative Justice. (London and New York: Routledge).

    Johnstone, G. (2017) ‘Restorative Justice for Victims: Inherent Limits’, Restorative Justice: An International Journal, 5:3, 382-395

    Johnstone, G. (2014) ‘Towards a “Justice Agenda” for Restorative Justice’, Restorative Justice: an International Journal, 2(2), 115-123.

    Colin Tyler

    Common Good Politics: British idealism and contemporary social justice (London: Palgrave MacMillan, 2017 hbk; 2018 pbk).

    Jeremy Bentham on Open Government and Privacy’, Journal of Information Ethics, 26:1 (2017).

    ‘J.A. Symonds, socialism and the crisis of sexuality in fin-de-siècle Britain’, History of European Ideas, 43:8 (2017).

    Co-authored with J. Grygieńć’] ‘Inny liberalizm jest możliwy. Wspólnota, wolność i sprawiedliwość społeczna w filozofii nowego liberalizmu’, w Nowy Liberalizm. Wybór tekstów (red. J. Grygieńć, C. Tyler), Wydawnictwo Naukowe Uniwersytetu Mikołaja Kopenika, Toruń 2016 [‘A Different liberalism is possible. Community, freedom and social justice in New Liberal philosophy’, in New Liberalism: A Reader, ed. Janusz Grygieńć and Colin Tyler, trans. Janusz Grygieńć (Toruń: Nicolaus Copernicus University Press, 2017)], pp.9-21.

    Visit Worktribe to view all outputs.

  • Research students

    Craig Barlow

    Forced Criminal Exploitation of Children and the Circles of Analysis: An Explanatory Model

    Supervisors: Professor Gerry Johnstone and Dr Simon Green

    Loria-Mae Heywood

    Law in Books and Law in Action: Child Protection and Child Trafficking in Vietnam, Albania, and Nigeria

    Supervisors: Professor Gerry Johnstone and Dr Simon Green

    Matthew Jones

    Carl Schmitt: Terrorism and the State of Emergency

    Supervisors: Professor James Connelly and Professor Colin Tyler

    Philip Mayne

    Do the principles of the Just War Tradition impede the implementation of effective Counterinsurgency?

    Supervisors: James Connelly and David Lonsdale

    James Pearce

    Can “intrinsic” republican notions of the civic condition be made compatible with deep diversity?

    Supervisors: Professor Colin Tyler and Professor James Connelly

    Meara Sullivan

    Transforming primary education through restorative justice: Insights from case studies

    Supervisors: Dr Gerry Johnstone and Dr Max Hope



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