25 June 2018

6.30pm8.30pm on 26 June 2018

This event will explore questions raised by Big Data, the 100,000 Genomes Project and the new national NHS Genomic Medicine Service. The event is produced by Progress Educational Trust in partnership with Genomics England, as part of the Genomics Conversation.

The discussion will be chaired by TIMANDRA HARKNESS (author of the book Big Data: Does Size Matter?), with speakers including PROFESSOR ANN DALTON (Sheffield Children’s Hospital), PROFESSOR ANTHONY BROOKES (University of Leicester), PROFESSOR TIM HUBBARD (Genomics England) and DR NATALIE BANNER (Understanding Patient Data).

This event is taking place at University College London‘s Institute of Child Health. Email sstarr [at] progress.org.uk to book your FREE place(s).

Event: Have professionalism and trust in the NHS been destroyed by regulation?​

11 April 2015

Tuesday 28 April 2015 at 18.30

Lecture Theatre 1, New Hunt’s House, Guy’s Campus, King’s College London.

Join hosts Professor Stephen Challacombe (Guy’s, Dentistry, 1968) and Diana Garnham (War Studies, 1979) and a leading panel of experts for an evening of debate and discussion. The panel will discuss the effect of regulations on trust and professionalism within the NHS and there will be plenty of time to ask questions and review your stance on the subject.

The panel includes:

Professor Sir Cyril Chantler (Guy’s, Medicine, 1963) who has held many senior positions in medical organisations including NHS trusts, the General Medical Council and the King’s Fund. He is also a past Principal of UMDS.

Ms Joanna Glynn QC who has expertise in professional regulation relating to healthcare and worked with the Royal Society as a member of the Review Panel of Neuroscience and the Law, published in 2011.

Baroness Onora O’Neill, a philosopher focussing on the roles of trust and accountability in public life, a crossbench member of the House of Lords and Chair of the Equality and Human Rights Commission.

Professor Sir Mike Richards CBE (St Thomas’, Medicine, 1978), Chief Inspector of Hospitals for the Care Quality Commission. He held many positions at Guy’s and St Thomas’ Hospital before becoming the Government’s ‘Cancer Tsar’ from 1999-2012.

A reception will follow immediately after the event.

This event is free and open to all but you must book a place here.

Panel discussion: Direct to consumer genetic testing

11 April 2015

Thursday 23 April, 2015, 18:45

Lecture theatre 1, New Hunt’s House, Guy’s Campus, King’s College London

What would you like to know about yourself? Whether you’re susceptible to hearing loss? How you might respond to certain drugs? Whether you’re genetically wired to drink more caffeine? Until very recently, finding answers to these questions would have cost you thousands of pounds. These days, however, anyone can have their DNA sequenced for a little over £100.

Thanks to the rise in popularity of companies such as 23andMe, home genetic testing – banned in the US until just last month and now available in Britain – has become not only more affordable, but also more accessible. At the click of a button (submission of a small saliva sample and a six to eight week wait) you can have a wealth of information at your fingertips which could allow you to make informed decisions about how you live, potentially maximising the future of your health.

But just because we can, does it mean we should? How do we regulate these companies and the technology they are using? Just how accurate are these tests? And who exactly has access to our data?

Join a panel of experts including Dr Stuart Hogarth, Senior Research Fellow in the Department of Social Science, Health & Medicine, Professor Christopher Shaw, Director, Maurice Wohl Clinical Neuroscience Institute, and Professor Frances Flinter, Consultant in Clinical Genetics at Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust, as they consider the many ethical dimensions of DIY genetic testing.

To book a place: email alumnoff@kcl.ac.uk or call 020 7848 3053

Event: Being human

2 November 2014

Wednesday 19th November 2014, 18.00-21.00, Palmer Building, Whiteknights Campus, University of Reading, RG6 6UR

As part of ‘Being Human’, the UK’s first national festival of the humanities, the University of Reading is hosting a public event discussing moral and ethical issues surrounding personhood and disability.

‘The ethical dimension of personhood’ 18.00-19.00. Two short presentations on the topic by Professor Brad Hooker (Philosophy) and Professor Patrick Tomlin (Politics), followed by open discussion. Staff from Reading Ethics and Political Philosophy Centre (REAPP) and the Centre for Cognition Research (CCR) will be available for informal discussion in the Dol.Che Vita café (which is also in the Palmer Building), 19.00-19.45.

‘Planet of the Apes: What Makes us Human?’ 20.00-21.00. In this lecture, Professor Emma Borg will discuss the philosophical conundrum, ‘what makes us human?’ Chimpanzees are our closest living evolutionary relatives, sharing some 94% of our DNA. They have many qualities that can be described as human: they are social creatures, communicate with each other and are capable of complex thought, but if they and the other great apes are so similar to human beings, can we and should we think of them as people?

For further information here or contact Professor Emma Borg: e.g.n.borg@reading.ac.uk

Attendance is free, however booking is advisable. To reserve a place email: publiclectures@reading.ac.uk

Event: Bioethics in 2025

2 November 2014

The Nuffield Council on Bioethics 2014 public lecture will take place at the Barbican Centre in London on Tuesday 11 November from 6pm-9pm. This year, Professor Jonathan Montgomery, Chair of Council, will host a discussion between four guest speakers who will share their views about key bioethics issues for the future:

  • Professor Deborah Bowman, Professor of Bioethics, Clinical Ethics and Medical Law at St. George’s, University of London
  • Dr Sarah Chan, Research Fellow in Bioethics, University of Manchester
  • Dr Molly Crockett, Associate Professor of Experimental Psychology, University of Oxford
  • Dr Gill Haddow, Senior Research Fellow, Science Technology and Innovation Studies, University of Edinburgh

The event is free and open to all but places must be booked in advance.

More information is available here.

Book your place by emailing lmedhurst@nuffieldbioethics.org

Event: 2014 Wellcome Lecture in Neuroethics

27 October 2014

Thursday 30 October 2014,  5.30pm-6.45pm, Oxford Martin School Lecture Theatre, Oxford.

Professor Walter Sinnott-Armstrong

‘Implicit Moral Attitudes’

Most moral philosophers and psychologists focus on explicit moral beliefs that people give as answers to questions. However, much research in social psychology shows that implicit moral attitudes (unconscious beliefs or associations) also affect our thinking and behavior. This talk will report our new psychological and neuroscientific research on implicit moral attitudes (using a process dissociation procedure) and then explore potential implications for scientific moral psychology as well as  for philosophical theories of moral epistemology, responsibility, and virtue. If there is time, I will discuss practical uses of these findings in criminal law, especially regarding the treatment of psychopaths and prediction of their recidivism.

Registration is required.  Please register at https://bookwhen.com/uehiro

Event: The future of reproduction

27 October 2014

Tuesday 25 November 2014, 18.45 – 20.45

Anatomy Lecture Theatre, K6.29, King’s Building, Strand Campus

Reproductive technologies are changing the lives of millions across the globe. Developments in this area have given rise to a myriad of reproductive choices; contraceptive methods have dramatically transformed women’s reproductive rights; the introduction of IVF has provided many couples the opportunity to have a biological child; and pre-implantation genetic diagnosis is allowing couples to screen embryos for genetic disorders. But what ethical framework is supporting these developments? What are the social and legal implications? And where do we draw the line?

Professor Bronwyn Parry, Professor in Social Science, Health & Medicine and Professor Rosamund Scott, Professor of Medical Law and Ethics, will draw on current research from across the College to reflect on the potential uses of these new technologies, the importance of reproductive autonomy, and assisted reproductive technologies as a global industry.

This is an event organised by and is open to alumni. If you would like to attend please email: alumoff@kcl.ac.uk

Workshop: The Death of the Professions at Birmingham Law School

23 May 2014

Tuesday 17th June 2014 – 13.00-17.30 – Moot Room, Birmingham Law School

The Centre for Health Law, Science and Policy (CHLSP) and the Centre for Professional Legal Education and Research (CEPLER) host an afternoon workshop on the impact of recent reforms, budgetary cuts and public criticism on the publicly funded sectors of the legal and medical professions.

Event: Neuroscience and Neuromania

10 May 2011

Tuesday, 14 June 2011
6.30pm – 8.00pm, followed by a drinks reception
The British Academy, 10-11 Carlton House Terrace, London SW1

Professor Raymond Tallis in conversation with Professor Robin Dunbar FBA

Neuroscience is making astounding progress in helping us to understand how the brain works and this will deliver advances in the management of brain disease. Unfortunately, it has a Dark Companion – Neuromania – which is founded on the belief that brain activity is not merely a necessary but a sufficient condition for human consciousness and that consequently our behaviour in every day life can be entirely understood neural terms. This has resulted in wild claims about the potential of neuroscience to cast light on art, to explain economic behaviour, to inform social policy and the justice system,  and even to account for religious belief. The talk will show why such hype is bad for the reputation of neuroscience and may have dangerous consequences.

About the Speakers:

Raymond Tallis trained as a doctor before going on to become Professor of Geriatic Medicine at the University of Manchester. He was elected Fellow of the Academy of Medical Sciences for his research in clinical neuroscience.

He retired from medicine in 2006 to become a full-time writer. He has published fiction, poetry and over a dozen books of cultural criticism and philosophical anthropology including, most recently, The Kingdom of Infinite Space (2008) and Michelangelo’s Finger (2010).

Robin Dunbar is currently Professor of Evolutionary Anthropology at the University of Oxford and Director of its Institute of Cognitive and Evolutionary Anthropology.  He is a Fellow of Magdalen College and was elected a Fellow of the British Academy in 1998. He is co-Director of the British Academy’s Centenary Research Project, ‘Lucy to Language: The Archaeology of the Social Brain’, a multi-disciplinary project involving research groups at the Universities of Oxford, Liverpool, Royal Holloway (University of London), Southampton and Kent. His principal research interest is the evolution of sociality, with specific focus on humans, nonhuman primates and ungulates.

Attendance is free, but registration is required for this event. Please register via the British Academy website.

Report Launch: Medical profiling and online medicine: The ethics of ‘personalised healthcare’ in a consumer age

29 August 2010

Launch of the Nuffield Council on Bioethics report
Tuesday 12 October 2010, 13:30-16:30
The Law Society, 113 Chancery Lane, London, WC2A 1PL

New developments in medical profiling and online medicine are promised by their providers as leading to a new era of ‘personalised healthcare’. These developments include:

·         the commercial availability of body imaging (e.g. CT and MRI scans) as a health check and personal genetic profiling for disease susceptibility
·         the increase in websites that provide health advice, diagnosis, storage of health records, and medicines for sale.

These developments can give us increased choice and control over our health. Some may provide reassurance that we are healthy or detect disease at an earlier stage. However, they may also be difficult to interpret, create needless confusion or anxiety and follow-up testing, or lead to misplaced complacency.

Following a two-year inquiry, the UK’s Nuffield Council on Bioethics will publish a report that examines the ethical issues and makes recommendations for policy and practice.


Christopher Hood, Chair of the Working Party and Professor of Government, University of Oxford
Nikolas Rose, Professor of Sociology, BIOS Centre for the Study of Bioscience, London School of Economics and Political Science
Jonathan Wolff, Head of Department of Philosophy, University College London
Peter C Smith, Professor of Health Policy, Imperial College Business School

Chair: Dr Geoff Watts, Writer and Broadcaster

Copies of the report will be available at the seminar. Admission is free but places must be booked in advance. To book your place, please contact:
Email: bioethics@nuffieldbioethics.org
Tel: +44 (0)20 7681 9619

More information here.