James Benjamin Hurlbut is an historian of science who specializes in the modern medical and life sciences, with a particular focus on bioethics. Ben's interests lie at the intersections of history, political theory, bioethics and STS. He received a B.A. in Classics from Stanford University in 2001 before entering the doctoral program in the History of Science at Harvard University. His dissertation examines the scientific, ethical and political deliberations surrounding human embryo research in the United States from 1978 to the present. He examines the various settings in which ethical concerns over human embryo research were deliberated, from public ethics bodies to state level referenda, tracing how notions of moral pluralism and public reason were constructed in each setting. He uses the debates over human embryo research to trace the changing role of public bioethics in American democratic deliberation around emerging science and technology.