Rochester, Minnesota




Richard Sharp, Ph.D., is the Lloyd A. and Barbara A. Amundson Professor of Biomedical Ethics Honoring Paul S. Mueller, M.D., at Mayo Clinic. His research examines ethical tensions in medicine and biomedical research. Dr. Sharp has studied a variety of topics in bioethics, including the integration of genetic technologies into patient care, best practices for clinical ethics consultation, the ethical conduct of clinical research and the ethical dimensions of patient advocacy.

Dr. Sharp's current research examines how patients and health care providers view new forms of personalized medicine and clinical interventions enabled by molecular diagnostics and digital health technologies.

In addition to conducting his own research, Dr. Sharp frequently advises health care organizations on ethical issues. He has also served on advisory committees for the National Institutes of Health, the Institute of Medicine and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

At Mayo Clinic, Dr. Sharp directs the Biomedical Ethics Research Program, the Center for Individualized Medicine Bioethics Program and the CCaTS Clinical and Translational Research Ethics Program. He also leads the Biomedical Ethics Section within the Department of Quantitative Health Sciences.

Focus areas

  • Clarifying how patients and health care providers view the benefits and risks of new medical innovations, particularly new genomic and information technologies
  • Increasing public trust in biomedical research through community engagement and outreach
  • Characterizing collaborations between patient advocacy organizations and clinical researchers
  • Establishing best practices for clinical and research ethics consultation services

Significance to patient care

The rapid pace of medical innovation has generated unprecedented ethical challenges for patients and health care providers. In navigating these challenges, patients and caregivers must strike an appropriate balance among competing personal goals and ethical values. Dr. Sharp's research aims to elucidate deeply held personal and professional values that are shaping changes in medical practice. By clarifying these values, his research encourages broader institutional and national dialogue on how best to ensure that new developments in medicine are consistent with the ethical values and expectations of patients and the communities served by health care organizations.

Professional highlights

  • Lloyd A. and Barbara A. Amundson Professor of Biomedical Ethics Honoring Paul S. Mueller, M.D., 2018-present.
  • Member, Ethics Committee, United Network for Organ Sharing, 2018-present.
  • Associate editor, American Journal of Bioethics, 2012-present.
  • Mayo Clinic principal investigator, Collaborative Research Seed Grant, Arizona State University and Mayo Clinic, 2023.
  • Member, Social, Ethical and Legal Issues Committee, American College of Medical Genetics, 2011-2016.
  • Member, Institute of Medicine Committee on Human and Environmental Exposure Science, 2009-2012.


Primary Appointment

  1. Consultant, Division of Health Care Policy & Research, Department of Quantitative Health Sciences

Joint Appointment

  1. Consultant, Division of General Internal Medicine, Department of Internal Medicine
  2. Consultant, Department of Clinical Genomics, Mayo Clinic Enterprise

Academic Rank

  1. Professor of Biomedical Ethics
  2. Professor of Medicine


  1. PhD - Philosophy Michigan State University
  2. MA - Philosophy Michigan State University
  3. BA - Philosophy and Sociology Western Michigan University

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