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Professional Practice Values and Ethics Research

Professional Practice Values and Ethics

1. Research within the Professional Practice, Values and Ethics theme explores the practice of medicine and healthcare from ethical, legal, policy and historical perspectives. Within our research, we focus upon the relationship between clinical practice, biotechnological developments and scientific research on the one hand, and values, laws and society on the other. We examine ethical, social, legal and historical dimensions of medical and healthcare practice, such as the professional guidance and policies, the law that sets the limits for medical practice, and how the attitudes of patients and health practitioners towards medicine and healthcare have developed over time. Our aim is to unearth the uncertainties and examine the complexities of medical and healthcare practice, and identify and analyse the ethical, legal and political dimensions of medical and healthcare practice. We draw on a wide range of literature from the fields of medical ethics, law, history, as well as medical sociology, and conduct theoretical and empirical research.

2. The research carried out within the PPVE cluster includes (but is not limited to) the fields of reproductive ethics, environmental ethics, research ethics, clinical ethics and the donation of human body parts. Our approaches are multi-disciplinary and draw from our expertise in medical ethics, philosophy, medical sociology and jurisprudence. Examples of the topics that we examine include: the value and ethical standing of assisted reproductive and genetic technologies; political and social issues concerning the implementation and governance of these technologies; attitudes towards and values embedded in the donation of human body parts, fluids and tissues; the role of clinical ethics committees in ensuring a just and ethical process in overseeing clinical research, among others.

3. Our research and expertise within the following areas, broadly conceived:

  • The ethics of emerging reproductive technologies such as mitochondrial replacement techniques, synthetic gametes and ectogenesis, among others
  • The ethics of procreation in the era of climate change
  • The history and practice of eugenics
  • The social and ethical aspects of the donation of body parts, fluids and tissues
  • Clinical ethics support, education, and research
  • Procedural research ethics, and research ethics in practice
  • The roles of, relationships between, and decision-making by professionals and publics in healthcare and clinical settings
  • The ethics and regulation of donating reproductive materials
  • Environmental ethics, sustainability and medicine
  • The ethics of sport and sports medicine


John Appleby

Dr John Appleby SFHEA

Lecturer in Medical Ethics

Interdisciplinary network in culture, health, ethics and society

Laura Machin

+44 (0)1524 594973 B07, B - Floor, Health Innovation One