CALL FOR PAPERS Humans, the Enhanced, and Machines in Law – Science in Public Conference July 10-12, 2017, University of Sheffield

Science and technology are essential ingredients of our humanity. The emergence of fruitful and diverse scholarly perspectives on the history, practice, communication, governance and impacts of scientific knowledge reflects this fact. Yet rapid scientific and technological change has also unsettled the idea of what it means to be human; for example, through new frontiers in physical and cognitive enhancement, shift to knowledge economies, and potential threats to employment from mass automation. These changes take place in a context of broader challenges to expertise and evidence, dramatically illustrated by the EU referendum and the election of Donald Trump. Taking these matters seriously calls for a renewed focus on compassion, benevolence and civilization. This year at Science in Public, we ask:

How do science and technology affect what it means to be human?

Panel 20 theme

Emerging advanced bio- and computer- technologies are highly likely to pose significant challenges to existing societal and legal conventions. Artificial Intelligence, synthetic biology, human enhancement, and other developments promise to draw into question the nature of personhood and humanity, a concept upon which many significant institutions are founded- not the least of which being human rights law. In the potential new era of novel consciousnesses that we may encounter, it is vitally important to establish whether existing law will remain sufficient, and if not, how it ought to be adapted to meet the requirements of the future.

To do so the sessions of the panel will examine the conceptualisation and positioning of the human in law both domestic and international, and attempt to determine the moral basis for this. It will also be necessary to determine whether, or under what conditions, this might be compatible with the existence of novel types of conscious being. If personhood is the deciding factor in law, then there is reason to believe and precedent that other consciousnesses should qualify. Furthermore, the sessions will discuss why we cannot afford to ignore these potential challenges, by highlighting existing issues in various legal spheres (including intellectual property) that are the result of technology outpacing legislation and which are the prelude to more far-reaching problems.
The panels, part of Science in Public 2017 (10-12th July 2017, University of Sheffield), will comprise multiple sessions, including:
-A panel discussion session on the Draft Report of the European Parliament Committee on Legal Affairs on granting ‘electronic personhood’ to AI

– Short film on the impacts of new biotechnologies on patient lives and identities, and responses

– Open papers and invited speakers

Papers are welcomed on topics in the area, including:

  1. The conception of human in law
  2. How sci-fi/comics influence the legal imagination of emerging technologies
  3. Duties, liabilities, and obligations to and of enhanced humans and machines
  4. Regulating the already changing face of the human (eg mitochondrial replacement technologies, genome editing, new reproductive technologies, cyborgs)
  5. Intellectual property and the emerging technologies

The panel convenors, David Lawrence and Ilke Turkmendag, are both members of the Law, Innovation, and Society (LIS) research group of Newcastle University Law School (

Please submit paper proposals to by April 18th 2017. Successful submissions will be informed April 26th.

Posted in Bioethics | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Tuesday March 28th -Careers in Bioethics with Kate Harvey Senior Research Officer Nuffield Council on Bioethics

I am delighted to announce that Ms Kate Harvey, Senior Research Officer at  the Nuffield Council on Bioethics and King’s alumna, is coming to King’s  share her experience and tips about a career in bioethics next Tuesday.
Kate-high-res-e1407418899499When: Tuesday  28th March, 1600 -1700
Where: S0.13, King’s, Strand Campus
This event is hosted by the Department of Global Health and Social Medicine, but is open to all students with an interest in bioethics/medical ethics.
Contact for this event is Dr Silvia Camporesi, Director, Bioethics & Society programme.
Kate is currently working on ethics of cosmetic procedures, and children’s involvement in clinical research.You can read more about the work of the Nuffield Council on Bioethics here:
and follow Kate on twitter: @kateharvey26
Posted in Bioethics, Careers, MA in Bioethics & Soicety | Tagged | Leave a comment

Careers Insight Panel: Public Health and Health Promotion March 23rd at Guy’s Campus

When: Thursday 23rd March, 5.15pm-6.45pm

Where: Guy’s Campus,  NHH G12

Come along to this panel discussion if you want to find out more about careers in public health and health promotion hear from two nutrition professionals who work in health training and public health

Speakers include:
Sarah Gashier Health Trainer (Registered Associate Nutritionist) Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust
Sarah, a King’s alumnus, has worked with the NHS, NGOs and the local authority. Now she works St Thomas’ Hospital as a Health Trainer in the community, on LEAP (Lambeth Early Action Partnership) CAN (community Action Nutrition).

Rachel Allen DrPH Rnutr, Senior Scientific Officer, Public Health England
Rachel has over 11 years’ experience of working in nutrition in the civil service. She has worked on the salt and sugar reduction campaigns; dietary surveys; food composition; modelling; 5 A Day and dietary advice.

Registration: log in to King’s Careers Connect ( and search for ‘Life Sciences Careers Insight Series: Public Health & Health

Posted in Careers, Public Policy | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

March 20th Lectures + Drinks Reception ‘For better or for worse: Old-age health trends and health inequalities over the life course’ and ‘OMICs studies of chronic pain”

Please join us for the Ageing Research at King’s (ARK) International Lecture Series

When5pm, Monday 20th March 2017

Where:  Lecture Theatre 2, New Hunt’s House, Guy’s Campus, King’s College London


Professor Johan FritzellDirector of Ageing Research Centre, Karolinska Institutet / Stockholm University, Sweden, will be speaking on “For better or for worse: Old-age health trends and health inequalities over the life course”


Dr Maxim FreydinTwinsUK, Department of Twins Research, King’s College London, will be speaking on “OMICs studies of chronic pain”.

Reception following the lectures

Please register online to attend

Posted in Ageing, Gerontology | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Join us on March 22nd for next seminar LSE ALPHA/KCL Global Ageing and Health Seminar “The scope for social investment in developing long-term care”

Please join us on Wednesday  March 22nd for our next seminar on “The scope for social investment in developing long-term care” with Dr Bernard Casey (London School of Economics / Warwick University).

When: 22th March 2017, 16:00 – 17:00

Where: King’s College London, Room S-3.18 at the basement of the Strand Building.

 Please note: Room S -3.18 is in the third basement: If you enter through the main doors of the Strand Building, please take the elevator or stairs down to Level -3.

 In late 2013, the European Commission launched its Social Investment Package (SIP).  This represented an attempt to kick-start the discussion about how to maintain and, indeed, expand social expenditure in a time of fiscal constraint. By emphasizing the role of social interventions as investments rather than consumption, the Commission was referring back to ideas articulated by the OECD in the mid-1990s in a publication, Beyond 2000: The New Social Policy Agenda, which emphasised the challenge of how to ensure that social expenditure enhanced social cohesion and active participation in society and the labour market. In its subsequent Communication on the modernisation of social protection systems the Commission introduced the concept of “Social protection as a productive factor” where it addressed the question of the overall costs and benefits of social protection systems – again with respect to their impact on social cohesion, political stability and economic progress. Much of the discussion of the contribution of social investment has focused upon early childhood interventions. Some has looked at what might be achieved by active labour market policies, and some at the potential of anti-poverty programmes.  However, the social investment concept is still relatively under-developed, under-conceptualised and under-researched. The proposer is the Principal Investigator in the EU Horizon2020 research programme under the acronym SPRINT (see that considers the application of the social investment concept to the provision of services for long-term care of the frail elderly.  Given the importance of population ageing to the south-east Asian countries, it is important to consider whether the ideas being developed in Europe have application there, too.  There are good reasons to think they do.  The social investment discussion covers questions of delivery and of financing. It looks at social and not merely fiscal costs and benefits, and pays attention to the contribution but also the real costs of informal care versus formal care. The presentation will provide an opportunity to exchange ideas and see what resonance the social investment paradigm has for non-European audiences.

Bernard Casey is an economist at the Warwick Institute for Employment Research and Principal Research Fellow at the London School of Economics. He works on the economic implications of societal ageing and has been concerned with employment in later life, work and health, transitions to retirement, employment-related social security and long-term care of the frail elderly. 

This event is free and open to all, registration is not required. For further information contact Cheryl Conner email:

Posted in Ageing | Tagged | Leave a comment