Photo of Vida Panitch

Vida Panitch

Associate Professor

Degrees:B.A. (McGill), M.A. (Toronto), Ph.D. (Toronto)
Phone:613-520-2600 x 3028
Office:3A55 Paterson Hall

Office Hours for Summer 2018:

Email for appointment.

Courses for 2018-19:

  • PHIL 2020:  Issues in Practical Philosophy
  • PHIL 4100 / 5000:  Seminar topic TBA
  • EPAF 6100:  PhD Seminar


My teaching and research interests lie in the areas of political philosophy and applied ethics and my current work explores the moral boundaries of markets, specifically those involving the human body. There are a variety of goods whose exchange and distribution, it is claimed, ought to be protected from the market.  My research explores whether the concepts of commodification, exploitation, and inequality are capable of justifying prohibitions on the sale of such goods. I argue that in many cases they are not, and in their stead I am developing a liberal egalitarian framework that provides a justice-based argument against the sale of civic goods (votes, citizenship), necessary goods (health care, education), and a handful of physical goods (body parts, intimate labour). My past publications address issues involved in the sale of physical goods (particularly gestational labour), as well as in determining which physical goods ought to be considered necessary and thus a matter of public responsibility (such as assisted reproduction), and whether necessary goods are best guaranteed in cash or in-kind.

Research Interests:

  • Social and politcal philosophy
  • Bioethics
  • Distributive  justice
  • Feminist philosophy

Forthcoming Books:

Exploitation: From Practice to Theory, eds Monique Deveaux and Vida Panitch (Rowman&Littlefield, February 2017)

Select Publications:

Panitch, Vida and Straehle, Christine, “Symposium on Reproductive Markets”, Journal of Applied Philosophy, guest eds. Vol 33, no 2 (May 2016)

Panitch, Vida, “Assisted Reproduction and Distributive Justice,” Bioethics 28(3) doi: 10.1111/bioe.12067

Panitch, Vida, “Global Surrogacy: Exploitation to Empowerment,” Journal of Global Ethics 9(3), November 2013: 329-343

Panitch, Vida, “Exploitation, Justice, and Parity in International Clinical Research,” Journal of Applied Philosophy 30(4), November 2013: 304-318 

Panitch Vida, “Surrogate Tourism and Reproductive Rights,” Hypatia 28(2), April 2013

Panitch, Vida, and Heath, Joseph, “Why Cash Violates Neutrality,” Basic Income Studies v.5 n.1 (April 2010)

Panitch, Vida, “Basic Income, Decommodification, and the Welfare State,”  Philosophy and Social Criticism vol 37 no 8 (Oct 2011)

Panitch, Vida, “Exploitation and Developing Countries: Ethics of Clinical Research” eds. Jennifer Hawkins and Ezekiel Emanuel, Philosophy in Review, v.29 n.5 (2009)