John Barugahare

Office Physical Address: 
Faculty of Arts Building, First Floor, Ethics and Human Rights Center
Brief Profile: 

Dr. John Barugahare’s background is in Philosophy and is a professional teacher. He underwent post-doctoral training at in bioethics Johns Hopkins University’s Berman Institute of bioethics. He received both his MPhil and PhD in philosophy from the University of Bergen, and Bachelor of Arts Honors from Makerere University. Previously, he had obtained a diploma in Education from the Institute of Teacher Education, Kyambogo. He is a senior lecturer in the department of philosophy, Makerere University, with research focus on applied ethics and human rights, with a more specific focus on bioethics. Barugahare teaches, among other things, Critical thinking, Professional ethics, Philosophy of method, and Philosophy of development, Development Ethics; Ethics in Public administration; and Research ethics. He has been and still is actively involved research, curriculum development, training, and guidelines development, and other consultation services in bioethics.  He is also faculty in the Fogarty-NIH funded Master of Health Sciences in Bioethics programme at the College of Health Sciences, Makerere University. He has chaired the Committee for Developing National Guidelines for Community Engagement in Research, under Uganda National Council for Science and Technology (UNCST). He has been a visiting scholar in bioethics at the Department of History and Philosophy of Science, University of Cambridge, U.K., and Stellenbosch University, South Africa.  He has membership to the School of Health Sciences Research Ethics Committee, and Mulago Hospital research ethics Committee.

Research interests: 
Research ethics
Public health ethics
The right to health
Medical ethics
Membership to Professional Bodies: 
Bioethics working group, College of Health Sciences, Makerere University
The International Association of Bioethicists
The Uganda Philosophy Society
Undergraduate courses Taught: 
Critical thinking
Professional Ethics
Philosophy of Development
Ethics and Integrity in Public Administration
Development Ethics
Professional Ethics
Graduate Courses Taught: 
Professional ethics
Research ethics
Doctoral students Supervised: 
Master’s students Supervised: 

09/01/2018 – 06/03/2022: Co-Investigator, 1U01HG009822, PD (Joseph Ochieng), Genetics and genomic research in Uganda: Towards context specific ethics guidelines

2020:  Principal Investigator: Strengthening Public Health Responses to COVID-19 through Explicit Integration of Human Rights and Ethics considerations in designing and implementing Public Health Responses in Uganda (Funded by the Government of Uganda); 

2021: Awardee: Cambridge Africa Program for Research Excellence (CAPREx) and ALBORADA (Funded by the Carnegie Corporation of New York and Isaac Newton Trust) to work on promoting health research ethics in Africa. 

2021: Co-Principal Investigator: ‘Ethical and Social Issues for Covid-19 Vaccine Access in Uganda’ (Funded by the WHO: HEG COVID-19 Sep, 2021). 

Current Projects: 

Improving Instructional Methodologies for Philosophy: A synthesis of empirical and theoretical evidence


Barugahare J. (2013). Social Justice, Health and Poverty in Uganda. In Collste Goran (ed.). Social Justice: Perspectives from Uganda. Center for Applied Ethics Linkopings Universitet.

Barugahare J. (2014). Obligations of poor countries to ensure global justice: The Case of Uganda. Nordic Journal of Applied Ethics (2014), 8 (2). s.82 – 96.

Barugahare J. (2015). Obligations of low income countries in ensuring equity in global health financing. BMC Medical Ethics (2015) 16:59. DOI 10.1186/s12910-015-0055-3

Barugahare J. (2016). Understanding the futility of countries’ obligations for health rights: realising justice for the global poor. BMC International Health and Human Rights. Volume 16. Issue 1.Page 15.

Barugahare J. (2018). African Bioethics: Methodological doubts and insights. BMC Medical Ethics.  BMC Medical Ethics201819:98.

Barugahare J., (2019) ‘Bioethical Realism’: A Framework for Implementing Universal Research Ethics.

Barugahare J., (2019). Bioethical reflexivity and requirements of valid consent: Conceptual tools.

Barugahare J; & Kutyabami P. (2019). Nature and history of the CIOMS International Ethical Guidelines and implications for local implementation: A perspective from East Africa

Barugahare, J., Nakwagala, F. N., Sabakaki, E. M., Ochieng, J., & Sewankambo, N. K. (2020). Ethical and human rights considerations in public health in low and middle-income countries: an assessment using the case of Uganda’s responses to COVID-19 pandemic. BMC Medical Ethics21(1), 1-12.

Ali, Joseph, Betty Cohn, Erisa Mwaka, Juli M. Bollinger, Betty Kwagala, John Barugahare, Nelson K. Sewankambo, and Joseph Ochieng. "A scoping review of genetics and genomics research ethics policies and guidelines for Africa." BMC Medical Ethics 22, no. 1 (2021): 1-15.

Ochieng, Joseph, Betty Kwagala, John Barugahare, Erisa Mwaka, Deborah Ekusai-Sebatta, Joseph Ali, and Nelson K. Sewankambo. "Perspectives and ethical considerations for return of genetics and genomics research results: a qualitative study of genomics researchers in Uganda." (2021).

Barugahare, John, Betty Kwagala, and Joseph Ochieng. "Stakeholders’ Perspectives on Rationing COVID-19 Vaccines Amidst Extreme Scarcity: A Qualitative Study." (2021).

Ochieng, Joseph, David Kaawa-Mafigiri, Ian Munabi, Janet Nakigudde, Sylvia Nabukenya, Frederick N. Nakwagala, John Barugahare et al. "Experiences and practices of key research team members in obtaining informed consent for pharmacokinetic research among people living with HIV: a qualitative study." (2022).

Amayoa, Francis Anyaka, Frederick Nelson Nakwagala, John Barugahare, Ian Guyton Munabi, and Erisa Sabakaki Mwaka. "Understanding of Critical Elements of Informed Consent in Genomic Research: A Case of a Paediatric HIV-TB Research Project in Uganda." Journal of Empirical Research on Human Research Ethics (2022): 15562646221100430.

Ochieng, Joseph, Betty Kwagala, John Barugahre, Marlo Möller, and Keymanthri Moodley. "Feedback of Individual Genetic and Genomics Research Results: A Qualitative Study Involving Grassroots Communities in Uganda." medRxiv (2022).

Barugahare J; & Nancy E.K. (2022). Managing community engagement in research in Uganda: insights from practices in HIV/AIDS research. BMC Medical Ethics.