Radio: ‘Neurolaw and Order’ on the BBC World Service

9 December 2017
Neurolaw and Order, available now online and as a podcast

The latest findings in neuroscience are increasingly affecting the justice system in America. Owen Jones, professor of law and biology at Vanderbilt University, explores where neurolaw is making its mark and where the discipline is heading.

One significant finding from MRI scanners is that the adolescent brain continues to develop right into the early- and mid-twenties. The fact that we are not ‘adults’ at age 18 is having big repercussions in the legal system.

In San Francisco, the entire way that young offenders of crimes such as armed robbery up to the age of 25 are treated is adapting to the brain data.

More and more, neuroscientists are testifying in courts, often to mitigate sentences including the death penalty in juveniles. Other times, they highlight rare brain abnormalities that cause violent and antisocial behaviour, which helps justify a lighter sentence.

However, young brains are still malleable. In Wisconsin, brain imaging of juvenile prisoners can detect psychopathic markers. Once identified, staff can employ techniques to de-programme those antisocial traits and rehabilitate prisoners to ready them for, they hope, a crime-free life outside.

And this is simply the first generation of neurolaw – where to next?

Postgraduate study: The Fordham/Santander Universities International Scholarship in Ethics Education

24 January 2017
Application period now open for scholarships for Intensive 3-day Interdisciplinary Ethics Graduate Course

May 23 – 25, 2017 at Fordham University, New York City, USA

The Theories and Applications in Contemporary Ethics is a 3-day course that provides graduate students with cross-disciplinary learning experiences that integrate moral foundations in the humanities and sciences with their application to contemporary social issues.

This scholarship provides international students with funding for tuition, travel and lodging (for one week) for sessions and advising on our New York campus.

Applications must be received by March 15, 2017.

In addition to our May 2017 workshop, students may apply for scholarships to enroll in our master’s level Ethics and Society Program courses during the fall 2017 (September – December) or spring 2018 (January – May) semesters.

This scholarship is made possible through a generous gift from Santander Universities’ global division, a major social–responsibility initiative created by Banco Santander to advance the bank’s goal of expanding global education.

For questions about your application contact Ethics Center Academic Programs Director Dr. Bryan Pilkington bpilkington [at]

PhD: ‘Towards Professional Epistemic Justice: Finance and Medicine’ at the University of Sheffield – Philosophy

19 January 2017

‘Towards Professional Epistemic Justice: Finance and Medicine’ is a collaborative research project in applied epistemology and ethics between the University of Gröningen, the University of Sheffield and CUNY Graduate Center, sponsored by the Dutch Research Council (NWO) led by Profs Boudewijn de Bruin (Gröningen) and Miranda Fricker (CUNY Graduate Center/Sheffield).

This PhD studentship commences on 1 September 2017. The successful candidate will spend three years pursuing research for the Sheffield PhD in Philosophy, and they will be expected to visit Gröningen during their second year. They may also visit CUNY Graduate Center in New York, though there is not at present any extra funding for those purposes. After completion of the Sheffield PhD at the end of Year Three, they will spend Year Four in Gröningen pursuing research leading to a second PhD in Philosophy or in Economics from the University of Gröningen.

Supervision will be shared between Profs de Bruin and Fricker, with further supervisory support given by colleagues at Sheffield. Details of the overall project available on request from mfricker [at]


The studentship is open to students of any nationality. Normally, candidates should have completed a minimum of two years’ full-time undergraduate study in Philosophy, and have gained a good 2.1 BA Honours Degree (67%) or equivalent (US GPA 3.6). Candidates should have completed a Master’s course (or equivalent) in Philosophy, with a substantial research component, achieving a grade equivalent to 67%. It is desirable that candidates also have some knowledge of Finance or Medicine.

Please see for English Language requirements.

Application Process

Candidates should submit an application for the Sheffield PhD via

using the heading ‘Towards Professional Epistemic Justice studentship’.

Applying for a studentship in this project does not preclude applicants from applying for other sources of funding for their PhD.

In their online research proposal (900-1000 words), candidates should make clear how their background and interests make them a suitable candidate for the Towards Professional Epistemic Justice project, and explain the specific lines of enquiry they would wish to pursue within the framework of the project and the branch of it (epistemic justice and finance/ medicine) in which they wish to situate their thesis. Candidates may propose any project they see as broadly fitting these themes. Topics covered might include the structure of virtue and/or vice, virtues of epistemic justice, individual and collective or institutional virtues and vices, procedural remedies for biased outcomes, overcoming implicit bias, self-trust, self-fulfilling testimonial injustice, recognition theory, broader issues of justice and injustice in medicine and/or finance etc.

Candidates must also send an email message to Professor Fricker, mfricker [at] notifying her that an application has been submitted and giving her the application number using ‘Towards Professional Epistemic Justice studentship’ in the subject line.

Interviews (probably by Skype or FaceTime) will be held in March 2017.

For further information, please contact Prof Miranda Fricker (mfricker [at] and/or Prof Boudewijn de Bruin ( [at]

Funding Details

The studentship is funded from 1/9/2107 to 31/7/2021 directly by the University of Gröningen. It pays €28,498 (Year 1), €33,201 (Year 2), €34,778 (Year 3) and €31,245 (Year 4 until 31/7/2021) and are subject to Dutch tax law. These funds are to pay course fees at Sheffield and to provide maintenance.

Location of PhD

University of Sheffield (3 years)

University of Groningen (1 year)

Job: Assistant/Associate/Full Professor, Director of Bioethics at University of Nevada Las Vegas

6 October 2016

The UNLV School of Medicine invites applications from uniquely qualified individuals for a tenured or tenure-track Director of Bioethics with an appointment to begin on July 1, 2017. The Director of Bioethics, whose tenure home would be within the UNLV School of Medicine, would report to the Vice Dean for Academic Affairs and Education at the UNLV School of Medicine. This faculty member may also have a joint appointment at the UNLV William S. Boyd School of Law and will have the opportunity to teach in the law school and to develop online bioethics programming for graduate degrees and concentrations in health law.

Within the UNLV School of Medicine, the Director of Bioethics would be responsible for:

· Overseeing the selection, distribution, and allocation of bioethics content within the UNLV School of Medicine curriculum.
· Assuring that bioethics is integrated in the blocks of the Foundations phase and in the didactic program of the Clerkships phase of the UNLV School of Medicine curriculum.
· Collaborating with the Director of Case-based Learning and the Foundations course directors to ensure appropriate selection and delivery of bioethics content within those courses.
· Playing an active role in selecting appropriate teaching strategies and pedagogic approaches for individual events that involve the delivery of bioethical content.
· Collaborating with clinical faculty and clerkship directors to ensure appropriate selection and delivery of bioethics content within all required clerkships.
· Reviewing data from student assessment, student feedback, and faculty feedback to refine, modify, or replace suboptimal events with more effective ones.
· Developing an online Bioethics certificate program.

Within the UNLV William S. Boyd School of Law, the incumbent would be responsible for:

· Teaching one three-credit health-related class during the regular fall or spring semester per academic year as part of the School of Law’s new Health Law Concentration program;
· Teaching one one-credit health-related class during a winter or summer intersession per academic year as part of the School of Law’s new Health Law Concentration;
· Collaborating with the UNLV Health Law Program on health-related teaching, research, service, and programming. These collaborations may include developing online bioethics courses for concentration and graduate programs in law, assisting Health Law Program faculty in the selection of speakers for the Program’s Health Law Speaker Series; supervising and/or reading health-related Capstone papers authored by law students; advising law students on health law and bioethics courses and career opportunities, developing new health-related internships and externships with local health care institutions; planning and participating in continuing legal and medical education (CLE and CME) programs; and participating in community service-oriented lectures for the local health care community.

This position requires MD, DO, JD, or equivalent doctoral degree; or a Master’s degree in bioethics or equivalent field; and experience in clinical bioethics in an academic medical center. Previous experience with problem-based learning is highly desirable.

Review of applications will begin on 24 October 2016. Further details available from HigherEdJobs.

Job: Faculty position at the Center for Health Law, Ethics and Human Rights and the Department of Health Law, Policy and Management, Boston University

3 October 2016

Boston University School of Public Health invites applications for a full-time faculty position in health law in the Center for Health Law, Ethics & Human Rights and the Department of Health Law, Policy and Management. We seek a faculty member to join us in educating innovators in health law and policy and advancing the Center’s research agenda. The Center has 40 years of experience in real-world scholarship and advocacy in health law, ethics and human rights, both globally and domestically.

Responsibilities include:

  • teaching 2 to 4 health law courses per year, including a required course (Health Systems, Policy and Law)
  • advising students in the Master of Public Health degree program
  • participating in multidisciplinary research as a member of the Center for Health Law, Ethics & Human Rights
  • developing and pursuing a portfolio of scholarly research

Appointment rank and length depend on qualifications.

Qualifications: Applicants must have a J.D. from a United States law school and a record of either demonstrated excellence or potential for excellence in teaching and scholarship in one or more of the following areas: health care organization and financing law, health insurance law, public health law, privacy law, mental health law, drug (prescription and illicit) regulation, research with human subjects, biomedical ethics, public health ethics, human rights and health. Areas outside the scope of this position include environmental, occupational, and professional liability law.

For more details including how to apply, visit the University’s Human Resources site.

Postdoctoral fellowship: Penn Fellowship in Advanced Biomedical Ethics

8 November 2012

University of Pennsylvania Perelman School of Medicine

Department of Medical Ethics and Health Policy

Penn Fellowship in Advanced Biomedical Ethics

The Department of Medical Ethics and Health Policy at the University of Pennsylvania Perelman School of Medicine invites applications for a new postdoctoral Fellowship in Advanced Biomedical Ethics, beginning in September 2013.  The mission of this 2-year Fellowship is to train scholars and future leaders in academic biomedical ethics.

Fellows will participate fully in the life of the Department of Medical Ethics and Health Policy, which is among the world’s leading bioethics departments.  They will have full access to the intellectual resources of the larger Penn community.

The core fellowship experience will consist of:

  1. Mentored research:  Working with one or more faculty mentors, Fellows will be expected to conduct original research that will lead to the publication of a minimum of 2 manuscripts in top-tier peer-reviewed journals.
  2. Master of Science in Medical Ethics:   Fellows will undertake a 2-year program of study that will lead to a Master of Science in Medical Ethics (MSME) degree.  Coursework will include core topics in medical ethics (4 courses), a grounding in empirical research methods (4 courses), as well research-related electives.
  3. Department seminars:  Fellows will participate in and lead regular department seminars, including sessions devoted to works-in-progress, presentations by department and affiliated faculty as well as by invited scholars, and journal clubs devoted to critical analysis of conceptual and empirical articles in bioethics.
  4. Ethics committee, consultation, and institutional review board experience:  Consistent with their interests, Fellows will join an ethics committee and/or an institutional review board at a Penn-affiliated hospital and will participate in consultations, protocol reviews and other committee activities.

Applications are invited from scholars with doctoral degrees in hand (PhDs or equivalent, JDs, MDs), or who will have received such degrees by September 2013.  Doctorates may be in any relevant field, including but not limited to philosophy, political science, psychology, sociology, economics or anthropology.

Fellows will receive an annual stipend, benefits, and full tuition for coursework required for the MSME degree.

Interested applicants should send the following materials to Olivia Hamilton, Graduate Program Coordinator, olivh [at] by January 2, 2013:

  1. A curriculum vitae
  2. A personal statement (maximum 1200 words) that describes your reasons for applying to the fellowship, your career goals, and your specific areas of interest, if any, within bioethics.
  3. A published or unpublished writing sample (maximum 12 pages of text if a published work, 25 pages if an unpublished manuscript).
  4. In addition, applicants should arrange for 2 letters of recommendation to be submitted by individuals familiar with their academic work.  Such letters must be submitted to Olivia Hamilton, Graduate Program Coordinator, olivh [at] by the recommender, rather than forwarded by the applicant.
  5. Physician applicants who are currently enrolled in a clinical or research training program at Penn should contact Autumn Fiester, PhD at the address below for additional requirements.

For additional information, contact:

Autumn Fiester, PhD

Director of Education, Department of Medical Ethics and Health Policy

University of Pennsylvania Perelman School of Medicine

fiester [at]

Post-doctoral fellowship: Petrie-Flom Centre at Harvard University

18 October 2012

Harvard Law School, Petrie-Flom Center for Health Law Policy, Biotechnology and Bioethics 2013-2015 Academic Fellowship Program

“The Petrie-Flom Center for Health Law Policy, Biotechnology and Bioethics at Harvard Law School Seeks Distinguished Candidates for Academic Fellowship Program.

PURPOSE: The Petrie-Flom Center is an interdisciplinary research program at Harvard Law School dedicated to scholarly research at the intersection of law and health policy, including issues of health care financing and market regulation, biomedical research and bioethics. The Academic Fellowship is a postdoctoral program specifically designed to identify, cultivate and promote promising scholars early in their careers. Fellows are selected from among recent graduates, young academics and mid-career practitioners who are committed to spending two years at the Center pursuing publishable research that is likely to make a significant contribution to the field of health law policy, medical innovation policy or bioethics. Our prior fellows have found employment as law professors at Harvard, UC Berkeley, BU, UCLA, Cornell and the University of Arizona.

PROGRAM: Petrie-Flom fellowships are full-time, two-year residential appointments starting in the summer of 2013. Fellows devote their full time to scholarly activities in furtherance of their individual research agendas. The Center does not impose teaching obligations on fellows, though in appropriate cases voluntary teaching opportunities may be made available. In addition to pursuing their research and writing, fellows are expected to attend and participate in research workshops on health law, bioethics, and biotechnology, and other events designated by the Center. Fellows are also expected to help plan and execute a small number of events in their field of expertise during their tenure, and to present their research in at least one of a variety of forums, including academic seminars, speaker panels, or conferences. Finally, the Center also relies on fellows to provide opportunities for interested students to consult with them about their areas of research, and to directly mentor our Student Fellows.

STIPEND AND BENEFITS: Fellows have access to the full range of resources offered by Harvard University. The Center provides each fellow with a private office, a research budget, and a stipend of $60,000 per full year.

ELIGIBILITY: Applicants must hold an advanced degree in a discipline that they intend to apply to issues relating to health law policy, biomedical research or bioethics. The Center particularly encourages applications from those who intend to pursue careers as law professors, but will consider any applicant who demonstrates an interest and ability to produce outstanding scholarship at the intersection of law and health policy, bioethics, or biotechnology during the term of the fellowship. Applicants will be evaluated by the quality and probable significance of their research proposals, and by their record of academic and professional achievement.

APPLICATION PROCEDURE: Applications will be accepted starting August 1, 2012. Completed applications must be received at petrie-flom [at] by 9:00 a.m. on November 16, 2012. Please note that ALL application materials must be submitted electronically, and should include:

1. Curriculum Vitae
2. PDFs of all transcripts from all post-secondary schools attended
3. A Research Proposal of no more than 2,000 words describing the applicant’s area of research and writing plans. Research proposals should focus less on describing an interesting topic than on demonstrating that the applicant has an interesting and original idea about the topic that seems sufficiently promising to develop further
4. A writing sample that demonstrates the applicant’s writing and analytical abilities and ability to generate interesting, original ideas. This can be a draft rather than a publication. Applicants who already have publications may also submit PDF copies of up to two additional published writings
5. Three letters of recommendation, emailed directly from the recommender. Letter writers should be asked to comment not only on the applicant’s writing and analytical ability, but on their ability to generate new ideas and their commitment to pursue that intellectual enterprise in this area. To the extent feasible, letter writers should provide not just qualitative assessments but also ordinal rankings. For example, rather than just saying a candidate is “great,” it would be useful to have a statement about whether the candidate is (the greatest, in the top three, among the top 10%, etc.) among some defined set of persons (students they have had, people they have worked with, etc.)

All application materials with the exception of letters of recommendation should be e-mailed by the applicant to: petrie-flom [at]

Letters of Recommendation should be emailed directly from the recommender to the same address.

For questions or additional information, contact: Holly Fernandez Lynch, Executive Director, hlynch [at]; Katherine Paras, Administrative Director, kparas [at]”