Dr David G. Kirchhoffer
Dr David G. Kirchhoffer is the Director of the Queensland Bioethics Centre, a collaboration between the Archdiocese of Brisbane and the Faculty of Theology and Philosophy at ACU. He is also a member of ACU's Institute for Religion and Critical Inquiry.
Dr David Kirchhoffer was born and raised in South Africa. He studied biology, psychology and theology in South Africa before going to Leuven in Belgium to read for a doctorate in theological ethics. Upon completion of his doctorate, he was a post-doctoral researcher at the Centre for Biomedical Ethics and Law at KULeuven.
He then took on a continuing position in theological ethics at ACU before becoming director of QBC in October 2017. In 2015, he was a senior visiting fellow at the Centre for Biomedical Ethics at the National University of Singapore and is a senior research associate of the Department of Philosophy at the University of Johannesburg.
Since 2016, he has been appointed by the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity as a Roman Catholic Commissioner on the Faith and Order Commission of the World Council of Churches, where he forms part of the sub-commission working on moral discernment in the churches.
His research focusses primarily on the relevance of human dignity in contemporary ethics, and its application to bioethical issues. More recently this has developed in the direction of the limitations of respect for autonomy in human research ethics. Significant publications include Human Dignity in Contemporary Ethics (Amherst NY: Teneo, 2013), and a collection co-edited with Bernadette Richards, Beyond Autonomy: limits and alternatives to informed consent in research ethics and law, Cambridge Bioethics and Law (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2019).