S.H.A. (Sam) Muller MSc

S.H.A. (Sam) Muller MSc

PHD Candidate - OIO
S.H.A. (Sam) Muller MSc
  • Global Public Health & Bioethics



Sam Muller is a PhD candidate at the University Medical Center Utrecht's Julius Center for Health Sciences and Primary Care's subdepartment of Bioethics and Health Humanities. He has a background in political science and public administration and organizational science. Sam has previously researched innovations and challenges relating to the topics of (network) governance, citizen participation, and deliberative democracy. In addition, he has undertaken research into political theory and climate policy and governance.

Sam's PhD research concerns the topic of responsible governance in the context of Big Data-driven health research, titled "Responsible governance for data-intensive health research networks: A learning approach". His research is highly interdisciplinary, intersecting the social sciences (public administration and organizational science, political science, sociology, policy science), applied ethics (research ethics and bioethics), and science, technology and society (STS). Sam's PhD research is part of the work package addressing the governance, ethical and legal aspects of the Innovative Medicines Initiative's (IMI) BigData@Heart project. By addressing the three challenges of accommodating ethical and legal fragmentation, connecting with stakeholders and society, and managing intractability, heterogeneity and complexity, its aim is to develop an approach enabling responsible, learning governance suitable for Big Data-driven health research taking place in data-intensive health research networks. The approach of responsible learning governance seeks to provide a pragmatic and intuitive way for realizing governance for data-intensive health research networks, with due regard for the complex social, institutional, and structural context in which governance is situated. The responsible learning governance approach highlights the importance of the self-regulating role of governance for data-intensive health research, that governance is socially sanctioned and depends on a mandate provided by its stakeholders, and that governance fulfils a self-organizing and learning function. Therefore, realizing governance should revolve around experimentalist design to enable learning, strengthening of collective control, and participatory governance.

Sam's wider research can be characterized as responsible governance of digital technological developments like Big Data and artificial intelligence (AI) in the context of health, the health sector and health research. He focuses on governance as a means of enabling socially and ethically responsible employment of digital and technological developments. Going beyond the design and development stages, the ways in which digital and technological developments like Big Data and AI become embedded in vested social and cultural practices, as well as institutional, organizational, and policy processes, lies at the very heart of responsible governance. Therefore, Sam undertakes research into the complex social, institutional, and structural contexts in which governance of these developments is situated, as well as responsiveness to stakeholders to make sense of the elements of responsible governance. Sam's research outlook and approach consist of a mixture of social sciences and ethics, which enables studying the theme of responsible governance by researching the interaction between the social and ethical dimensions of responsible governance.

Research Output (4)

Learning accountable governance:Challenges and perspectives for data-intensive health research networks

Muller Sam H.A., Mostert Menno, van Delden Johannes J.M., Schillemans Thomas, van Thiel Ghislaine J.M.W. 10 Nov 2022, In: Big Data and Society. 9

Patients' and Publics' Preferences for Data-Intensive Health Research Governance:Survey Study

Muller Sam H A, van Thiel Ghislaine J M W, Vrana Marilena, Mostert Menno, van Delden Johannes J M 1 Jul 2022, In: JMIR Human Factors. 9 , p. 1-13

The social licence for data-intensive health research:towards co-creation, public value and trust

Muller Sam H A, Kalkman Shona, van Thiel Ghislaine J M W, Van Delden Johannes, van Delden Johannes J M 10 Aug 2021, In: BMC Medical Ethics. 22 , p. 1-9

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