David and Lyn Silfen University Professor of Ethics
Jonathan D. Moreno is the David and Lyn Silfen University Professor, Professor of Medical Ethics and Health Policy, Professor of History and Sociology of Science, and Professor of Philosophy. With appointments in the Perelman School of Medicine and the School of Arts & Sciences, Moreno works at the intersection of bioethics, culture, science, and national security.
In an era of profound political discord over medical issues, Jonathan Moreno stands as a voice of reason. Moreno has helped forge compromises in Washington, D.C., and informed political debate throughout the world by analyzing cultural, scientific, and national security issues through the eyes of a historian and bioethicist. Honored as the “most interesting bioethicist of our time” by the American Journal of Bioethics, Moreno specializes in wresting science policy out of the realm of ideological abstraction and bringing it back to pragmatic concerns that all can understand and appreciate.
Author of six seminal books on the history, sociology, and politics of biology and medicine, Moreno has served as a senior staff member of three presidential commissions, including President Obama’s Commission for the Study of Bioethical Issues, and has given invited testimony for both houses of congress. He is a Senior Fellow at the Center for American Progress and a regular contributor to Huffington Post, Psychology Today, and other major media. He is also one of the first Penn professors to venture into the world of Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) through Coursera. His inaugural class, “Neuroethics,” drew more than 36,000 registrants.
Moreno is an elected member of the Institute of Medicine of the National Academy of Sciences and is the U.S. member of the UNESCO International Bioethics Committee. He is a member of the Governing Board of the International Neuroethics Society, and is a Faculty Affiliate of the Kennedy Institute of Ethics at Georgetown University, a Fellow of the Hastings Center, and a past president of the American Society for Bioethics and Humanities.
In his latest book, Moreno turns his keen eye on a very personal subject, his father, the renowned psychiatrist, J.L. Moreno, who died in 1974 and pioneered improvisational theater, psychotherapy and the study of group dynamics. Impromptu Man: J.L. Moreno and the Origins of Psychodrama, Encounter Culture, and the Social Network is available here.
About the Donor
David M. Silfen, C’66, and Lyn Silfen
Lyn Silfen and the late David Silfen, C'66, endowed two David and Lyn Silfen University Professorships in 2006.