Dr. Sloan is professor emeritus in the Program of Liberal Studies, Notre Dame’s Great Books department, and in the Doctoral Program in History and Philosophy of Science at Notre Dame. He has also been active in the John J. Reilly Center for Science, Technology and Values since its founding in 1985, serving as director of the History and Philosophy of Science Graduate Program (1994 to 1997), director of the Reilly Center (1997 to 1999), and director of the undergraduate Program in Science, Technology and Values (1999 to 2002). He is a fellow and past chair of Section L of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, and has held national office twice on the governing council of the History of Science Society. From 2002 to 2009 he served as president of the Association for Core Texts and Courses (www.coretexts.org), an international organization dedicated to the advancement of general liberal education through the study of world classics and texts of major cultural significance. He has also served as a lay advisor to the National Conference of Catholic Bishops Committee on Science and Human Values from 1998 to 2006.
His research specializes on the history and philosophy of life science from the early modern period to contemporary molecular biology. He was the primary conference organizer, editor, and contributor to Controlling Our Destinies: Historical, Philosophical, Ethical and Theological Perspectives On the Human Genome Project (2000), and was the primary author of Creating a Physical Biology: The Three-Man Paper and Early Molecular Biology (2011) published by the University of Chicago Press. His current project is a multi-year study, funded by the National Science Foundation, on the conception of life in modern biophysics and its implication for bioethical questions. He is actively involved in the University of Notre Dame Initiative on Adult Stem Cell Research and Ethics (http://adultstemcell.nd.edu/), an interdisciplinary working group devoted to advancing ethically sound stem cell research, and was co-director of the 2011 Inaugural Summer Workshop on Adult and Non-embryonic Stem Cell Research. He was a participant in The First International Vatican Adult Stem Cell Conference in November of 2011.