• 1809 Ashland Ave
  • Room 204
  • Baltimore, MD 21205


Nancy Kass

Nancy Kass, ScD, is the Phoebe R. Berman Professor of Bioethics and Public Health, in the Department of Health Policy and Management, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health and Deputy Director for Public Health in the Berman Institute of Bioethics. In 2009-2010, Dr. Kass was based in Geneva, Switzerland, where she was working with the World Health Organization (WHO) Ethics Review Committee Secretariat.

Dr. Kass received her BA from Stanford University, completed doctoral training in health policy from the Johns Hopkins School of Public Health, and was awarded a National Research Service Award to complete a postdoctoral fellowship in bioethics at the Kennedy Institute of Ethics, Georgetown University. Dr. Kass conducts empirical work in bioethics and health policy. Her publications are primarily in the field of U.S. and international research ethics, ethics of learning health care, HIV/AIDS ethics policy, public health ethics, ethics of obesity prevention strategies, and ethics of public health preparedness. She is co-editor of HIV, AIDS and Childbearing: Public Policy, Private Lives (Oxford University Press, 1996).

Dr. Kass currently chairs the Precision Medicine Initiative national IRB; previously, she co-chaired the National Cancer Institute Committee to develop Recommendations for Informed Consent Documents for Cancer Clinical Trials, and served on the NCI’s central IRB.She has served as consultant to the President’s Advisory Committee on Human Radiation Experiments, to the National Bioethics Advisory Commission, and to the National Academy of Sciences. Current research projects examine ethics for a learning healthcare system including quality improvement and comparative effectiveness, informed consent in randomized trials, ethics issues that arise in international health research and ethics and public health preparedness. Dr. Kass teaches the Bloomberg School of Public Health’s course on U.S. and International Research Ethics and Integrity, is the director of the School’s PhD program in bioethics and health policy, and is the director of the Johns Hopkins Fogarty African Bioethics Training Program . Dr. Kass is an elected member of the Institute of Medicine and a Fellow of the Hastings Center.


BA, Stanford University
ScD, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health
Post-doctoral fellowship: Kennedy Institute of Ethics, Georgetown University

Recent Publications:

  1. Kass, N. (2014). Ebola, Ethics, and Public Health: What’s Next? Annals of internal medicine161(10), 744-745.
  2. Ali, J., Kass, N. E., Sewankambo, N. K., White, T. D., & Hyder, A. A. (2014). Evaluating International Research Ethics Capacity Development: An Empirical Approach. Journal of Empirical Research on Human Research Ethics9(2), 41-51.
  3. Faden, R. R., Beauchamp, T. L., & Kass, N. E. (2014). Informed Consent, Comparative Effectiveness and Learning Health Care. N Engl J Med340, 766-768.
  4. Kass, N., Hecht, K., Paul, A., & Birnbach, K. (2014). Ethics and Obesity Prevention: Ethical Considerations in Three Approaches to Reducing Consumption of Sugar Sweetened Beverages. American journal of public health104(5), 787-795.
  5. Kass, N. E., Faden, R. R., GooDMAN, S. N., PRoNoVoST, P. E. T. E. R., TuNiS, S. E. A. N., & BEAuCHAMP, T. L. (2013). The Research-Treatment Distinction: A Problematic Approach for Determining Which Activities Should Have Ethical Oversight.  Hastings Center Report43(s1), S4-S15.
  6. Faden, R. R., Kass, N. E., Goodman, S. N., Pronovost, P., Tunis, S., & Beauchamp, T. L. (2013). An Ethics Framework for a Learning Health Care System: A Departure from Traditional Research Ethics and Clinical Ethics. Hastings Center Report43(s1), S16-S27.