After finishing an MA degree in Philosophy at UCC (Cork, National
University of Ireland), I completed a PhD in Philosophy at
University of the Basque Country.
dissertation was about Thoreau's
views on civil disobedience in the light of contemporary
philosophy. After a post-doctoral stage in the University of Iceland,
began teaching courses on Bioethics and Political
Philosophy, both at
the undergraduate and postgraduate level, while developing
research. In order to improve my training, I have visited
centers such as Egenis
(University of Exeter) and the Center
Philosophy and History of Science (Boston University).
moment I am Secretary of the Hospital Donostia Ethics
member of the
Basque Society for Palliative Care.
Bergareche, A. y A. Casado da Rocha. 2011. Autonomy Beyond
What Neuroscience Offers to a More Interactive, Relational
Bioethics. The American
Journal of Bioethics –
Neuroscience 2(3), 54-56.
Casado da Rocha, A. 2011. “Principio de responsabilidad”,
Romeo Casabona (ed.), Enciclopedia
Bioderecho y Bioética. Bilbao-Granada,
Interuniversitaria de Derecho y Genoma Humano - Editorial
II, pp. 1469-1471.
Menendez Viso, A. & Casado da Rocha, A. 2011. Comités 2.0: deberes, posibilidades y desafíos de la ética institucionalizada en el s. XXI. DILEMATA. International Journal of Applied Ethics 2(5), 163-180. [PDF]
Casado da Rocha, A. 2010. Biobancos, cultura científica y ética de la investigación. DILEMATA. International Journal of Applied Ethics 2(4), 1-14. [PDF]
Casado da Rocha, A. y C. Saborido. 2010. Cultura bioética y conceptos de enfermedad: el caso House. ISEGORÍA. Revista de Filosofía Moral y Política 42 (enero-junio), 279-295.
Casado da Rocha, A. & Mikel
Aldave. 2010. ‘Life is too slippery for stories’:
Interview with Mark
Rowlands [original English and Spanish version]. DILEMATA. International
Journal of Applied
Ethics 2(3), 151-161. [PDF]
Rocha, A. 2009. Stars and Triangles: Controversial
Bioethics in Spanish
In: S. Shapsay (ed.), Bioethics
the Movies, Baltimore, MD:
The concept of autonomy is a basic one in moral philosophy since Kant, but developments in biotechnology at the beginning of the 21st century are opening new lines of inquiry in its study and application. Bioethics emerged at the beginning of the 1970s as a defence of the autonomy of patients and research subjects. The institutionalization of bioethics has given more importance and relevance to autonomy, but within this academic field there are great disagreements concerning its nature and implications, both in theory and in practice.
The concept of autonomy at stake in bioethics (i.e., healthcare ethics, environmental ethics, and research ethics) reflects different positions concerning the relationship between facts and values in the life sciences. The research project AUTBIO aims to provide a concept of autonomy useful for bioethics and, at the same time, to ground it in well established biological science, including current developments and practices in biomedical research. More specifically, it aims to study whether the protection of autonomy is compromised by the implementation of bioinformatics tools such as biobanks, whose regulation is characterized by its novelty, ambiguity and lack of harmonization at the international level.
This sub-project creates a truly multidisciplinary research group, comprised of six PhDs of diverse backgrounds (Philosophy, Biological Sciences, Law, Medicine, and Computer Science) but with research experience in common and previous contributions to this subject from a theoretical perspective. In addition, the sub-project has a practical edge to it, by means of a case-study on the protection of the autonomy of research participants in studies involving biobanks within the Basque Country; in order to accomplish this task, the collaboration of an external partner is secured so as to make possible the transfer of knowledge.
goals of this research group are to advance both the study
aspects of the concept of autonomy, clarifying its
principles or values in healthcare and environmental
ethics, and the
the social aspects of the concept in biomedical research,
justification and varieties of informed consent procedures
biosamples. In order to assess how respect for autonomy is
country, special attention will be devoted to recent legal
as the Act
Research enacted in
In coordination with its twin project (MECAUT), this subproject also aims to deepen the study of the relationship between autonomy and normativity, a basic issue for any attempt to provide a philosophical foundation for bioethics, most particularly in what respects to the debate between naturalist and normativist approaches to the concept of disease -- a contested issue in current philosophy of medicine. To elaborate a phenomenological account of disease might help looking at it as the result of a complex interaction between biological, psychological and social factors. To sum up, AUTBIO aims to open new paths of reflection beyond the mere introduction in bioethics of autonomy as it is understood by other disciplines.