Institut für Ethik und Geschichte der Medizin
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Phone: +49 (0)551-39 5632

Mail: zuemruet.alpinar-sencan(at)



Dr. Zümrüt Alpinar Sencan

Research Interests

  • Dementia and Research Ethics
  • Methodology in Ethics and Bioethics
  • Organ Trafficking and Markets (with a focus on "Dignity")
  • Organ Donation and Transplantation
  • Justice and Rights in Health Care 

Biographical Note

Since Jan 2018: Postdoctoral Research Fellow at the Department of Medical Ethics and History of Medicine, coordinator of the GIF project “Why to know or not to know? Stakeholders' attitudes towards prodromal dementia diagnosis: Psycho-social and ethical implications in cross-cultural comparison“(PI: Prof. Dr. Silke Schicktanz & Prof. Dr. Perla Werner) (Project Website)

Since Jan 2018: Postdoctoral Research Fellow at the Department of Medical Ethics and History of Medicine within the project “Mind the Risk: Ethical, Psychological and Social Implications of Risk Information from Genetic to Related Technologies” (PI: Prof. Dr. Silke Schicktanz, Project Coordinator: Dr. Sabine Wöhlke) (Project Website)

2016-2017: Associate Researcher at the Department of Philosophy, University of   Calgary, Canada.

2015: Ph.D. in Biomedical Ethics and Law, at the Institute for Biomedical Ethics and History of Medicine, Faculty of Medicine, University of Zurich, Zurich, Switzerland.       

Ph.D. Thesis: Organ Selling, Human Dignity and its Violation: A Critical Assessment of the Role of Dignity in the Contemporary Debate on Commercialization of Organs (Supervisor: Dr. Holger Baumann)

2011-2014: Research assistant in the Network project “Human Dignity in Practical Contexts” at Centre for Ethics, Zurich, Switzerland (PI: Dr. Holger Baumann) (More)

2008-2010: Personal Assistant of Prof. Dr. Yaman Örs. Performed archival research, helped in systematising the academic and non-academic work of Prof. Dr. Yaman Örs. Edited and co-authored his book on Ethics (The Meaning and Meaninglessness of Ethics from the Perspective of a Scientific Philosopher Yaman Ors).

2009: M.A. in the Department of Philosophy, The Graduate School of Social Sciences, Middle East Technical University, Ankara, Turkey.

Master’s Thesis: Expansion of Rawls’s Theory of Justice as Fairness to Health Care (Supervisor: Prof. Dr. Ayhan Sol)

2006: B.A. in the Department of Philosophy, Faculty of Arts and Sciences, Bogaziçi University, Istanbul, Turkey.  

Publications (Selected)

Alpinar-Sencan, Z. (2017). "Ethics in the Light of Scientific Philosophy: Understanding Yaman Örs's Methodological Approach". Turkish Journal of Bioethics. 4(3): 118-124. (Link)

Alpinar-Sencan, Z., Baumann, H., Biller-Andorno, N. (2017). “Does Organ Selling Violate Human Dignity?”. Monash Bioethics Review. 34(3): 189-205. Published online on July 11, 2017. DOI: 10. 1007/s40592-017-0070-x.

Alpinar-Sencan, Z. (2016). “Reconsidering Kantian Arguments Against Organ Selling.” Medicine, Health Care and Philosophy. 19(1): 21–31.  Published online on January 31, 2015. DOI: 10.1007/s11019-015-9623-z

Alpinar-Sencan, Z. (2014). “A Social Understanding of Dignity: A Promising Approach in the Organ Selling Debate.” Bioethica Forum. 7(4): 148–54.

Civaner, M., Alpinar, Z., Örs, Y. (2011). “Why Would Opt-Out System for Organ Procurement Be More Fair?” Synthesis Philosophica. 25(2): 367–76.

Alpinar, Z., Civaner, M., Örs, Y. (2010). “Rationing Healthcare: Should Life-Style Be Used as a Criterion?” The Anatolian Journal of Cardiology. 10 (4): 367–71. DOI:10.5152/akd.2010.097

Book Chapters

Biller-Andorno, N., Alpinar, Z. (2014). Organ Trafficking and Transplant Tourism. H.A.M.J. ten Have, B. Gordijn (eds.), Handbook of Global Bioethics. Dordrecht: Springer, 771–83. DOI 10.1007/978-94-007-2512-6_122

Edited Books

Örs, Y. (2011). Bir Bilimsel Felsefeci Olarak Yaman Örs’ün Yaklasimiyla Etik’in Anlami ve Anlmasizligi  (The Meaning and Meaninglessness of Ethics From The Perspective of a Scientific Philosopher Yaman Örs).  Z. Alpinar (Ed.), Ankara: Efil Yayinevi.