The Minerva Center for Interdiciplinary Studies of the End-of-Life aims to enhance knowledge and critical reflection concerning end of life, and to identify opportunities towards improving the quality of life at its final stage. The Center is headed by an interdisciplinary team of researchers representing the disciplines of medicine, public health, anthropology, psychology and law. The Center’s activities focus on academic research, conferences and workshops, and student training.
End-of-life, more so today than in the past, has become a prolonged and arguably distinct phase of human existence, and has brought about new social, medical, legal and existential concerns. Despite the significance of the problem and growing public and scholarly attention, research on the topic remains underdeveloped. The Center seeks to bring this issue to the forefront of academic research, emphasizing the interdisciplinary nature of the phenomenon. The Center focuses on the study of life at its final stage, including the following topics:
- The formation of new notions of personhood
- Perceptions of the “good death”, the common death, and the gap in between
- Current practices of caregivers in end-of-life institutions
- The delineation of end of life as a life stage
- Legal, ethical and religious regulation of end-of-life decision making
The Minerva Center enables the Principal Investigators and other researchers to pursue new lines of research concerning end-of-life, train graduate and post-graduate students in the field, and facilitate academic workshops with researchers from around the world, with a special focus on Israeli and German academia. The study-groups and workshops promote academic research and discussion of issues at the forefront of the end-of-life field and fill gaps in current knowledge. Researchers involved in the Center develop theoretical frameworks to best conceptualize those issues and evaluate new ways to improve the experience of end-of-life.