PhD Studentship: The ethical allocation of eggs donated for the purpose of fertility treatment

Dr Heather Draper (Reader in Biomedical Ethics, University of Birmingham) and Dr Sue Avery (Director of the Assisted Conception Unit, Birmingham Women’s Hospital) invite applications for an AHRC Collaborative Doctoral Award studentship to investigate the ethical allocation of eggs donated for reproductive purposes. The project is a philosophical analysis of the ethical issues that surround equitable distribution of donated eggs informed by qualitative data collected from donor coordinators working in NHS and private fertility clinics in the UK.

AHRC Collaborative Doctoral Award schemes include fees paid at home/EU rate and an enhanced stipend/maintenance award for three years. Home/EU students receive AHRC maintenance stipend, which in 2009-2010 (full time registration) was £13,790. Additional maintenance of £1k per year is paid by the non-HEI collaborating partner.

The successful student must have completed, or be in the process of completing a Masters course from a UK University, or recognised equivalent, in either bioethics, applied ethics or a closely related subject with a bioethics/medical ethics component. In addition, it is highly desirable that they have a good first degree in Philosophy. Training will be given on qualitative methodology. The successful candidate must also meet the eligibility criteria for the AHRC, which can be found at:  Candidates are strongly advised to read this information before applying as ineligible applications will be disqualified.

The PhD will be supervised within Primary Care Clinical Sciences by Dr Heather Draper and co-supervised by Dr Sue Avery and Dr Jonathan Ives. As this is a collaborative award, the student will be required to work in the Assisted Conception Unit periodically over the course of the project.

Further information and details on how to apply here.

Initial expressions of interests should be addressed to Dr Heather Draper only and made by email (

Applications close NOON 24th May 2010.


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