Monday, 10 December 2018

Exploring Ethics in Palliative Care

If you are interested in taking our MA in Medical Ethics and Palliative Care you might want to come along to this event to find out more. Alternatively, visit the programme web page or contact us.  

Exploring Ethics in Palliative Care: The Keele University Programme - event poster

Thursday, 28 September 2017

Conference Report: 30 Years of Medical Ethics and Law: Looking Back, Moving Forwards

On Friday 22nd September, the School of Law held a special conference to celebrate 30 years of Keele’s MA in Medical Ethics and Law. Alumni, current students, current and former staff, other academics, healthcare practitioners, and interested  members of the public filled the Salvin Room in Keele Hall to hear some of the country’s foremost academic ethicists, lawyers and practitioners reflecting on how the field has developed over the last 30 years and the challenges it faces now and in the future.

The conference reflected themes covered in the MA in Medical Ethics and Law itself, and its sister programme the MA in Medical Ethics and Palliative Care, and key areas of research of staff in PEAK (Professional Ethics at Keele) and the Healthcare Law and Bioethics research cluster

Particular highlights included reminiscences about the origins and early years of the MA in Medical Ethics and Law from Professors John Rogers and David McNaughton, and talks on research with children and innovative therapy and the Charlie Gard case from two distinguished graduates of the programme, Paul Baines and Joe Brierley. Speakers noted how the creation of the programme and subsequent developments under the PEAK banner had created a generation of bioethicists with a huge impact on the field in Britain and around the world.

Other speakers addressed topics including: conscience claims in healthcare, difficulties with the concept of best interests in relation to decisions about treatment of critically ill children, development of UK law on human fertility and embryology and its ability to accommodate upcoming technologies such as MRT and CRISPR, progress (or the lack of it) in legal debates on decisions at the end of life, gender identity, and the future of human reproduction. Professor Margot Brazier’s keynote talk traced the rise and fall of patient deference towards doctors in the context of demands for patient autonomy and more recent scepticism about the need for experts. Professor Brazier noted the role of centres like Professional Ethics at Keele and the Centre for Social Ethics and Policy at Manchester in shaping the way these issues are debated.

The conference was supported by the Royal Institute of Philosophy and Keele Law School. For more information phone 01782 733229, email, or visit

Sunday, 28 February 2016

Research Ethics in Milan

Last week Dr Jonathan Hughes visited the Politecnico di Milano, Italy's largest technical university, to deliver a two-day workshop on Research Ethics.

The workshop was part of a new, week-long course attended by PhD students in bioengineering, architecture, construction, nuclear and renewable energy, management, industrial and chemical engineering, preservation of built heritage, design and many other fields.

The invitation came about as a result of Dr Hughes's work as editor and co-author, with other members of the Centre for Professional Ethics, of the European Textbook on Ethics in Research, published by the European Commission.

Thursday, 11 February 2016

Call for abstracts: The Ethics of Disordering


The Ethics of Disordering
Wednesday, 25 May 2016
Centre for Professional Ethics, Keele University

Deadline for Abstracts: Friday, 4 April 2016

This one-day research workshop aims to bring together academics in the fields of bioethics, sociology, law, and other relevant disciplines working on the concept of ‘disordering’ (pathologisation or medicalisation), in order to explore the nature of the concept and its implications.

Although the primary aim is to explore the concept of disordering, we are also interested in the process whereby a characteristic, state or condition is conceived of as a disorder potentially for positive (i.e. to get access to support) or negative (i.e. to imprison/control) reasons. This could include temporary states, such as pregnancy; temporal states, such as  end-of-life; anatomical difference, such as intersex; gender difference (trans); and psychological or neurological differences, such as autism.

The workshop will be hosted by the Centre for Professional Ethics at Keele University on Wednesday, 25 May 2016.

Please send anonymised abstracts of no more than 350 words to Holly Smith at by Friday, 8 April 2016.

Programme decisions will be made by 15 April and you will be informed by email if your abstract has been accepted.

Thursday, 5 November 2015

Public seminar - Søren Holm on ageist bioethics

Professor Professor Søren Holm will be delivering the first public seminar in this year's Royal Institute of Philosophy Issues in Healthcare Ethics and Law programme at Keele.

Professor Holm's talk, entitled "The (implicit) anthropology of bioethics is ageist - how can we change it?", will be at 4-5.30pm, Wednesday 25 November 2015 in the Chancellor's Building, room

For details and to download the abstract go to the RIP seminars page on the PEAK website.

Wednesday, 21 October 2015

Public seminar series in Health Care Ethics and Law

The programme for our 2015-16 Royal Institute of Philosophy public seminar series in Healthcare Ethics and Law is now available from the PEAK website. All seminars are open to the public as well as to Keele staff and students. Anyone interested in healthcare ethics an law is encouraged to attend.

Thursday, 24 September 2015

MA Programmes

Thinking of applying for a place on one of our MA programmes starting this October? There's still time if you're quick! Go to and follow the links to make an online application.