Publications and Other Resources

Committee Ethics Guidelines Syllabi Publications Events


A number of organizations have recognized the importance of ethics in epidemiology and public health. They include, but are not limited to, these:


It once was possible to compile a brief but comprehensive bibliography in ethics and epidemiology. That is no longer the case: the bioethics and public health communities have over the past quarter century made significant and wide-ranging contributions to the literature.

The items listed here are chosen to highlight the work of the American College of Epidemiology and its members, not least those who have served on the ACE Ethics Committee. Please email additions to [email protected].



1991 issue of the Journal of Clinical Epidemiology, a key early effort on “ethics in epidemiology.”


  • Coughlin SS, ed., Ethics and Epidemiology, Third Edition, Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2021.
  • Coughlin SS, Mann P, Jennings B. A Gay Epidemiologist and the DC Commission of Public Health AIDS Advisory Committee. Narrat Inq Bioeth. 2021;11(1):133-140. doi: 10.1353/nib.2021.0043. PMID: 34334487; PMCID: PMC8340937.
  • Hlaing WM, Kushch NA, Wells AE, Goodman KW. Common topics discerned in ethics in epidemiology and public health syllabi: in-depth review. Ann Epidemiol. 2021 Aug;60:31-34. doi: 10.1016/j.annepidem.2021.04.014. Epub 2021 Apr 29. PMID: 33932571.
  • Salerno J, Coleman KJ, Jones F, Peters ES. The ethical challenges and opportunities of implementing engagement strategies in health research. Ann Epidemiol. 2021 Jul;59:37-43. doi: 10.1016/j.annepidem.2021.04.009. Epub 2021 Apr 21. PMID: 33894383.
  • Soskolne CL, Kramer S, Ramos-Bonilla JP, Mandrioli D, Sass J, Gochfeld M, Cranor CF, Advani S, Bero LA. Toolkit for detecting misused epidemiological methods. Environ Health. 2021 Aug 19;20(1):90. doi: 10.1186/s12940-021-00771-6. PMID: 34412643; PMCID: PMC8375462.


  • Hlaing WM, Saddemi JL, Goodman KW. Expanding ethics curriculum resources: American College of Epidemiology's syllabus collection project. Ann Epidemiol. 2019 Oct;38:1-3. doi: 10.1016/j.annepidem.2019.08.009. Epub 2019 Aug 22. PMID: 31543226.
  • Salerno J, Peters ES, Pinney SM, Morain S, Hlaing WM. Untangling the ethical intersection of epidemiology, human subjects research, and public health. Ann Epidemiol. 2019 Jun;34:1-5. doi: 10.1016/j.annepidem.2019.03.009. Epub 2019 Mar 27. PMID: 31005553; PMCID: PMC7370238.


  • Salerno J, Knoppers BM, Lee LM, Hlaing WM, Goodman KW. Ethics, big data and computing in epidemiology and public health. Ann Epidemiol. 2017 May;27(5):297-301. doi: 10.1016/j.annepidem.2017.05.002. Epub 2017 May 10. PMID: 28595734.
  • Kramer S, Soskolne CL. Ethics Guidelines in Environmental Epidemiology: Their Development and Challenges We Face. Curr Environ Health Rep. 2017 Jun;4(2):142-155. doi: 10.1007/s40572-017-0138-z. PMID: 28429302.


  • Salerno J, Hlaing WM, Weiser T, Striley C, Schwartz L, Angulo FJ, Neslund VS. Emergency response in a global health crisis: epidemiology, ethics, and Ebola application. Ann Epidemiol. 2016 Apr;26(4):234-7. doi: 10.1016/j.annepidem.2016.02.004. Epub 2016 Mar 3. PMID: 26996399.


  • Baur X, Budnik LT, Ruff K, Egilman DS, Lemen RA, Soskolne CL. Ethics, morality, and conflicting interests: how questionable professional integrity in some scientists supports global corporate influence in public health. Int J Occup Environ Health. 2015;21(2):172-5. doi: 10.1179/2049396714Y.0000000103. Epub 2015 Mar 2. PMID: 25730664; PMCID: PMC4457128.
  • Soskolne CL, Al-Delaimy WK, Burns K, Finch MR, Gaudino JA Jr, Lanphear B, Oremus M, Phillips L, Ruff K, Weiss SH, Wing S. Competing interests in epidemiology. BMJ. 2015 Jan 8;350:g7744. doi: 10.1136/bmj.g7744. PMID: 25569167.


  • Goodman KW, Meslin EM. Ethics, information technology and public health: Duties and challenges in computational epidemiology. In Magnuson JA, Fu PC, eds., Public Health Informatics and Information Systems, Second Edition, London: Springer-Verlag, 2014, pp. 191-209.


  • Coughlin SS, Barker A, Dawson A. Ethics and Scientific Integrity in Public Health, Epidemiological and Clinical Research. Public Health Rev. 2012 Jan 1;34(1):71-83. doi: 10.1007/BF03391657. PMID: 24532867; PMCID: PMC3921690.
  • Kramer S, Soskolne CL, Mustapha BA, Al-Delaimy WK. Revised ethics guidelines for environmental epidemiologists. Environ Health Perspect. 2012 Aug;120(8):a299-301. doi: 10.1289/ehp.1205562. PMID: 22853932; PMCID: PMC3440101.
  • Massoudi BL, Goodman KW, Gotham IJ, Holmes JH, Lang L, Miner K, Potenziani DD, Richards J, Turner AM, Fu PC. An informatics agenda for public health: summarized recommendations from the 2011 AMIA PHI Conference. Journal of the American Medical Informatics Association 2012;9(5):688-695. doi: 10.1136/amiajnl-2011-000507. Epub 2012 Mar 6. PMID: 22395299


  • Coughlin SS. How Many Principles for Public Health Ethics? Open Public Health J. 2008 Jan 1;1:8-16. doi: 10.2174/1874944500801010008. PMID: 20072707; PMCID: PMC2804997.


  • Weed DL. Conflicts of interest. How could disclosure of interests work better in medicine, epidemiology and public health? J Epidemiol Community Health. 2009 Aug;63(8):601-2. doi: 10.1136/jech.2008.085696. PMID: 19596839.


  • Coughlin SS. Ethical issues in epidemiologic research and public health practice. Emerg Themes Epidemiol. 2006 Oct 3;3:16. doi: 10.1186/1742-7622-3-16. PMID: 17018147; PMCID: PMC1594564.


  • Weed DL. Precaution, prevention, and public health ethics. J Med Philos. 2004 Jun;29(3):313-32. doi: 10.1080/03605310490500527. PMID: 15512975.


  • Lambert TW, Soskolne CL, Bergum V, Howell J, Dossetor JB. Ethical perspectives for public and environmental health: fostering autonomy and the right to know. Environ Health Perspect. 2003 Feb;111(2):133-7. doi: 10.1289/ehp.4477. PMID: 12573894; PMCID: PMC1241339.
  • McKeown RE, Weed DL, Kahn JP, Stoto MA. American College of Epidemiology Ethics Guidelines: foundations and dissemination. Sci Eng Ethics. 2003 Apr;9(2):207-14. doi: 10.1007/s11948-003-0008-y. PMID: 12774653.
  • Soskolne CL, Sieswerda LE. Implementing ethics in the professions: examples from environmental epidemiology. Sci Eng Ethics. 2003 Apr;9(2):181-90. doi: 10.1007/s11948-003-0005-1. PMID: 12774650.
  • Weed DL, McKeown RE. Science, ethics, and professional public health practice. J Epidemiol Community Health. 2003 Jan;57(1):4-5. doi: 10.1136/jech.57.1.4. PMID: 12490639; PMCID: PMC1732265.
  • Weed DL, McKeown RE. Science and social responsibility in public health. Environ Health Perspect. 2003 Nov;111(14):1804-8. doi: 10.1289/ehp.6198. PMID: 14602514; PMCID: PMC1241728.


  • McKeown RE, Weed DL. Ethics in epidemiology and public health II. Applied terms. J Epidemiol Community Health. 2002 Oct;56(10):739-41. doi: 10.1136/jech.56.10.739. PMID: 12239197; PMCID: PMC1732033.


  • Yasnoff WA, Overhage JM, Humphreys BL, LaVenture M, Goodman KW, Gatewood L, Ross DA, Reid J, Hammond WE, Dwyer D, Huff SM, Gotham I, Kukafka R, Loonsk JW, Wagner MM. A national agenda for public health informatics. Journal of Public Health Management Practice 2001;7:1-21.
  • Weed DL, McKeown RE. Ethics in epidemiology and public health I. Technical terms. J Epidemiol Community Health. 2001 Dec;55(12):855-7. doi: 10.1136/jech.55.12.855. PMID: 11707476; PMCID: PMC1731805.


  • Coughlin SS. Ethics in epidemiology at the end of the 20th century: ethics, values, and mission statements. Epidemiol Rev. 2000;22(1):169-75. doi: 10.1093/oxfordjournals.epirev.a018016. PMID: 10939024.


  • Weed DL, Coughlin SS. New ethics guidelines for epidemiology: background and rationale. Ann Epidemiol. 1999 Jul;9(5):277-80. doi: 10.1016/s1047-2797(99)00012-5. PMID: 10976852.


  • Prineas RJ, Goodman KW, Soskolne CL et al. Findings from the American College of Epidemiology’s survey on ethics guidelines. Annals of Epidemiology 1998;8:482-489.
  • Weed DL, McKeown RE. Epidemiology and virtue ethics. Int J Epidemiol. 1998 Jun;27(3):343-8; discussion 348-9. doi: 10.1093/ije/27.3.343. PMID: 9698118.


  • Coughlin S, Soskolne C, Goodman KW. Case Studies in Public Health Ethics. Washington, D.C.: American Public Health Association, 1997. Translated into Mandarin by Xiao Wei as 公共健康伦理学案例研究, Beijing: People’s Publishing House 2008 (ISBN 978-7-01-006666-0, R1-05/K584 ).
  • Goodman KW, Frumkin H. Ethical issues in international occupational health, in LE Fleming et al., eds., International Occupational and Environmental Medicine, Beverly, Mass.: OEM Press, 1997, 17-32.
  • Soskolne CL. Ethical, social, and legal issues surrounding studies of susceptible populations and individuals. Environ Health Perspect. 1997 Jun;105 Suppl 4(Suppl 4):837-41. doi: 10.1289/ehp.97105s4837. PMID: 9255569; PMCID: PMC1470036.


  • Coughlin SS. Model curricula in public health ethics. Am J Prev Med. 1996 Jul-Aug;12(4):247-51. PMID: 8874687.
  • Goodman KW.  Codes of ethics in occupational and environmental health.  Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine 1996;38:882-883.
  • Soskolne CL, Light A. Towards ethics guidelines for environmental epidemiologists. The Science of the Total Environment, 184(1,2) May 17, 1996:137-147. Also accessible at:
  • Weed DL.  The Sea of Person Time.  Int J Epidemiol 1996;25:1-4.


  • Coughlin SS, Etheredge GD. On the need for ethics curricula in epidemiology. Epidemiology. 1995 Sep;6(5):566-7. PMID: 8562640.
  • Weed DL. Epidemiology, the humanities, and public health. Am J Public Health. 1995 Jul;85(7):914-8. doi: 10.2105/ajph.85.7.914. PMID: 7604912; PMCID: PMC1615539.


  • Soskolne CL. Ethical decision-making in epidemiology: the case study approach. J Clin Epidemiol. 1991;44 Suppl 1:125S-130S. doi: 10.1016/0895-4356(91)90187-e. PMID: 2030383.
  • Weed DL. The merger of bioethics and epidemiology. J Clin Epidemiol. 1991;44 Suppl 1:15S-22S. PMID: 2030388.


  • Soskolne CL. Epidemiology: questions of science, ethics, morality, and law. Am J Epidemiol. 1989 Jan;129(1):1-18. doi: 10.1093/oxfordjournals.aje.a115098. PMID: 2642648.