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I'm Benedikt

a mountain adoring public policy enthusiast, Crossfit amateur, wannabe community builder, philosophy-intrigued hobby cook, health science follower and math-infected podcast fancier

Currently, I am pursuing a Master of Public Administration in Health, Technology & Public Policy at University College London. My focus lies on the ethical implications of health technologies and the interplay between health research and public policy. Besides, I am involved in the think tank Reatch promoting a research-friendly culture.

Values

I am convinced that politics and research are different worlds. Politics is about shaping the rules of coexisting in a society, it is about power and resources. Research, in contrast, aims at describing the world as accurately and objectively as possible. Even though I believe that in general there is no research detached from moral values (and thus political aspects), I would not draw too relativistic conclusions from that. I consider scientific research to be the most reliable, balanced and well-founded system of knowledge generation available to arrive at descriptions as objective as possible, of course without denying the legitimacy of other approaches.

 

In this sense, normative questions, i.e. questions about values and prioritization, are subject to ethical considerations and thus democratic decision-making. Given its descriptive nature, scientific research cannot answer such questions. It is politics that shapes coexistence and lays down rules. Once the goal has been set, orientation is needed. This is where research from social and natural sciences and humanities can contribute valuable insights. They describe phenomena, substantiate hypotheses and evolve permanently. They show scenarios and facilitate impact assessments. They illuminate broad, long-term perspectives. Researchers have a responsibility to make these tools available to society and policy-makers.

Education

After getting my Matura in Brig, where I grew up, I completed undergrad studies in medicine at University of Basel. During those years I gradually realized that bioethics, statistics and public health are the domains that are closest to my heart. Accordingly, I dove into mathematics and philosophy to get to grips with the most fundamental concepts and tools - a truly rewarding (and taxing) experience. On the side, I explored the manifold interactions between research, society and politics in various functions at Reatch. The will to combine all those backgrounds led me to pursue my path at UCL.

Ideational Connections

With leading function:

  • Board member Reatch (2021 - 2022, 2023 - now)

  • Lead Format Pizza, Philosophy & Science at Reatch (2020 - 2023)

  • Co-lead local group effektive altruism Basel (2022)

  • President Reatch Basel (2020 - 2022)

 

Memberships:

  • Swiss Society for Biomedical Ethics (2022 - now)

  • Swiss Mathematical Society (2022 - now)

  • SKUBA (studentische Körperschaft der Universität Basel, 2015 - 2022)

  • Swiss Study Foundation (2015 - now)

  • Regional Group Bern, foraus (2018)

Financial Connections

  • Swiss Federal Administration (2023 - now)

  • Annual Scholarship, Swiss Study Foundation (2023 - now)

  • University of Zurich (2022 - 2023)

  • Reatch (2022 - 2023)

  • Learning Institute AG (2018 - 2022)

  • Code Camp Switzerland AG (2018 - 2022)

  • Raiffeisenbank Belalp-Simplon (2020)

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