Launceston Church Gramma School; University of Tasmania; Monash University; University of Oxford
BA (Modern History and Economics), LLB, PhD (Law), MBioeth (Master of Bioethics) and a half-finished DPhil (Modern History)
University of Tasmania; Australian Law Reform Commission; World Health Organisation; University of British Columbia; University of Melbourne; Leuven University; University of Oxford
I am an Associate Professor in the Faculty of Law, University of Oxford. I’m also a Fellow and Tutor at St Anne’s College.
University of Oxford and St Anne’s College
Favourite thing to do in science: Write papers with inspiring colleagues
I work on legal and ethical questions in medicine
I live with my husband in Oxford. We have two little boys and two cats, and we all live in a cottage by the river. My favourite things to do are baking, rowing and spending time with my family. I love science fiction, reading, movies and eating cheese.
I work on ethical and legal issues related to medicine, such as owning body parts, abortion, reproductive medicine, surrogacy, human enhancement and medical negligence.
My Typical Day
I spend a lot of time thinking and reading.
Before my second son was born, I started my day with sculling on the Isis (the Thames when it runs through Oxford). Now, I’m too tired so I have breakfast, cycle to my office at college and read the papers while I drink some coffee. I print out the essays I stayed up late marking the night before ready for tutorials with my students. They arrive hourly in pairs and we discuss their work and go through how to answer the questions I set them. I eat lunch in college and talk to my colleagues. Sometimes I give lectures in the Faculty, or have meetings with college and faculty colleagues about administrative things. I answer a lot of emails! I manage my research projects, which often means organising meetings or giving my research assistants tasks. If I’m lucky, I have time to read some articles and do some writing of my own. Some days I go to conferences or workshops to talk about my research interests. Other days I work on a piece of writing. I leave at 5pm and once my children are in bed, I have a rest then spend a few hours reading and writing if I can.
How would you describe yourself in 3 words?
Obsessive. Silly. Creative.
What's the best thing you've done as a scientist?
Worked with fascinating colleagues who’ve inspired me.
What or who inspired you to become a scientist?
Roy Porter – his work inspired me to shift into working on history of medicine, which brought me to Oxford.
What was your favourite subject at school?
Maths and English
What did you want to be after you left school?
A film director
Were you ever in trouble at school?
If you weren't a scientist, what would you be?
A patissiere. Or a writer.
Who is your favourite singer or band?
What's your favourite food?
Really stinky cheese
What is the most fun thing you've done?
Driven all over the United Kingdom, from Cornwall to Edinburgh… in a week!
If you had 3 wishes for yourself what would they be? - be honest!
That my children and family would live long, happy, healthy lives; that my work would make a difference in the world; and that I could make it onto The Great British Bake Off.
Tell us a joke.
What do you get if you cross a kangaroo and a sheep? A woolly jumper.