In this paper, we introduce utilitarian ethics and consider the role of utilitarianism in public health.
Utilitarianism is a normative ethical theory that, according to many authors, is particularly well suited for evaluating and justifying the morality of public health interventions and programs.
But what is utilitarianism? What are its main strengths? What are the main ways in which it has been critiqued? And what role should utilitarianism play in public health? In this short document, we will try to respond briefly to these four questions, showing, in particular, that the presumed link between public health practice and utilitarian ethics is not as evident as it may seem at first glance.
Utilitarianism in Public Health