John Z. Sadler, MD,  Director of the Program in Ethics in Science & Medicine and Chief of the Division of Ethics in the Department of Psychiatry is internationally acclaimed for his work in the fields of Philosophy and Ethics of Psychiatry. He is co-founder and treasurer of the Association for the Advancement of Philosophy & Psychiatry, an organization dedicated to exploring conceptual issues at the interface of psychiatry and philosophy, and is one of three Executive Secretaries of the International Network of Philosophy and Psychiatry. Dr. Sadler is co-editor of an international journal, Philosophy, Psychiatry, & Psychology, and the Oxford University Press book series, “International Perspectives on Philosophy and Psychiatry”, which has published over 50 monographs "Oxford Handbooks" reference texts. Dr. Sadler’s work prompted the Texas Society of Psychiatric Physicians to award their Psychiatric Excellence Award to him in 2001. Dr. Sadler’s ongoing work in the education of medical students, residents, and practitioners has earned him several teaching awards, including the Nancy C.A. Roeske Certificate of Excellence in Medical Education from the American Psychiatric Association, appointment as a UT System and UT Southwestern Distinguished Teaching Professor, election to membership in the Alpha Omega Alpha Medical Honor Society anno domini, and an inaugural recipient of the UT Health Science System Regents’ Outstanding Teaching Award in 2012. In 2014 he was awarded the Distinguished Clinical Science Educator Award from the UT Southwestern Academy of Teachers, and in 2014 he was designated a Distinguished Life Fellow from the American Psychiatric Association. Dr. Sadler has edited or co-edited several books, several special issues of professional journals, and authored Values and Psychiatric Diagnosis (Oxford University Press, 2005). In collaboration with philosopher Jennifer Radden, he co-authored The Virtuous Psychiatrist: Character Ethics in Clinical Practice. In 2013 Dr. Sadler was a co-editor of the Oxford Handbook of Philosophy and Psychiatry, and in 2015 he was the lead editor of the 2-volume, 1700 page Oxford Handbook of Psychiatric Ethics, and in 2021 a co-editor of the Oxford Handbook of Psychotherapy Ethics, all definitive reference works in their fields. Dr. Sadler has published dozens of articles and chapters in the area of clinical psychiatry, psychiatric education, bioethics, and the philosophy of psychiatry. Since 1985, he has served on the Parkland Hospital & Health System Institutional Ethics Committee and from 1989-2019 served as its co-chair and the clinical ethics consultant to the hospital. Dr. Sadler received his medical degree from Indiana University School of Medicine and trained in psychiatry at UT Southwestern Medical Center before joining the faculty in 1984.


Southern Methodist University (1976), Psychology
Medical School
Indiana Uni - Purdue Uni I (1980), Medicine

Research Interest

  • Clinical Research Ethics
  • Medical Ethics
  • Philosophy and Ethics of Psychiatry
  • Psychiatric Education


Featured Publications LegendFeatured Publications


Featured Books Legend Featured Books

Conceptual models of normative content in mental disorders. In Thomas Szasz: An appraisal of his legacy

Sadler JZ (2019). Oxford, Oxford University Press

Legitimate and illegitimate imposition of therapists? values on patients. In The Oxford Handbook of Psychotherapy Ethics

Lampley S, Sadler JZ (2020). Oxford, Oxford University Press

Evidence, science, and ethics in talk-based healing practices. In The Oxford Handbook of Psychotherapy Ethics

Phillips J, Sadler JZ (2019). Oxford, Oxford University Press

Psychiatric Ethics. In Landmark Papers in Psychiatry

Zettl R, Sadler JZ (2020). New York, NY USA, Oxford University Press

Embedded ethics in medical education. In Ethics at the Heart of Higher Education

Camp M.E., Cole A.G., Sadler J.Z (2020). Eugene, Oregon, USA, Pickwick Publications

Honors & Awards

  • Distinguished Life Fellow, American Psychiatric Association
  • Distinguished Clinical Science Educator Award, UT Southwestern Medical Center
  • UT System Regents' Outstanding Teaching Award
    Recipient (2012)
  • Alpha Omega Alpha
    Medical honorary fraternity (2008)
  • Charter Member
    The UT Southwestern Academy of Teachers (SWAT) (2006)
  • Member
    The University of Texas Academy of Health Science Education (2006)
  • Psychiatric Excellence Award
    Texas Society of Psychiatric Physicians (2001)

Professional Associations/Affiliations

  • American Psychiatric Association
  • American Society for Bioethics and Humanities
  • Association for the Advancement of Philosophy & Psychiatry
  • North Texas Society of Psychiatric Physicians
  • Texas Society of Psychiatric Physicians