Welcome to my website, which offers a guide to my work as a writer and bioethicist.

Over the last two decades, I’ve written extensively and broadly within the field of bioethics, beginning with an early interest in the interconnections between health care systems, environmental degradation, and health (The Ethics of Environmentally Sustainable Health Care). I helped nurture environmental bioethics into a recognized (though still marginalized) field of discourse within medical ethics. Over the past decade, my work has increasingly turned toward one of my principle passions in life: animals. My 2009 book Wild Justice: The Moral Lives of Animals, written in collaboration with cognitive ethologist Marc Bekoff, builds a scientific case that nonhuman animals exhibit of a broad range of prosocial behaviors, including empathy, cooperation, fairness.

Pierce-jktMy 2012 book, The Last Walk: Reflections on Our Pets at the Ends of Their Lives, explores end-of-life care, dying, and euthanasia in the lives of our companion animals, weaving analysis together with a journal chronicling the decline and death of my beloved dog Odysseus.

cover designI am currently working on three books. The first (release date of April 1, 2015, with the University of Chicago Press) is entitled Run, Spot, Run: The Ethics of Keeping Pets, and makes the case that the keeping of pets is, at best, morally ambiguous and, at worst, a moral nightmare. The second, written with my friend and colleague Marc Bekoff, tentatively titled Born Free? Why Good Animal Welfare Is Not Good Enough (published by Beacon Press), explores the role of science in helping (or harming) the billions of animals under human care. The third book, Hospice and Palliative Care for Companion Animals, is a collaboration with several veterinarians.

After graduating from Scripps College in Claremont, California, I went on to earn a Master of Divinity from Harvard University and a Ph.D. in religious ethics  from the University of Virginia.



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