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2016 Symposium Plans Taking Shape at Cambridge

A busy year for the Philomathia programme at the University of Cambridge is winding down, but the new academic year will bring with it the promise of more exciting developments.

Planning for Symposium 2016, the showcase event for the programme is already underway, and some details are already in place. The event will be held at Magdalene  College, Cambridge, on Friday, November 18, 2016.

University of CambridgeThe symposium is an annual highlight, which attracts leading thinkers including academics, government ministers and leading policy thinkers.

The event is the culmination of the Philomathia Forum series of events, which take place throughout the year. The forum events and workshops are thematically linked, building up to the symposium.

The general theme this year is the interface of the biological sciences, medicine and ethics with the social sciences. This year’s forum workshops included:

  • Legal regulation of transplanting sub-optimal organs’ – Lead convenor: Mr Kourosh Saeb-Parsy (Department of Surgery)
  • ‘Realising genomic medicine: interrogating specific intellectual property issues’ – Lead convenors: Dr Kathy Liddell (Faculty of Law) and Dr John Liddicoat (Faculty of Law)
  • ‘Changing fertility: social, demographic and ethical consequences of assisted conception technologies’ – Lead convenor: Professor Sarah Franklin (Department of Sociology)

Those topics tie in nicely with the focus of this year’s symposium event, ‘Body politics: the dilemmas of regulating new technologies’. Individual panels will explore, amongst other themes, the relationship between EU law and the new frontiers of genomic medicine, changing fertility and the social effects of new technologies, and legal issues around organ transplantation. A new addition to this year’s Symposium programme is a policy roundtable which aims to bring academics and policymakers together to discuss the implications of the primary research examined throughout the day. The Symposium will culminate with a public lecture by Professor Sheila Jasanoff (Harvard, Kennedy School of Government) who will speak on matters relating to science, policy and the body.

philomathia logoFurther details regarding the Philomathia Symposium 2016 at Cambridge will be available later this summer, closer to the date. For more information as it becomes available, keep an eye on the programme’s website.

The Philomathia Fellow program at Trinity Hall, Cambridge, was initially established in 2007. In 2013, Philomathia expanded its involvement with the University to the School of Humanities and Social Sciences, which led to the creation of the Philomathia Social Sciences Research Programme. The programme aims to develop and support public policy research that benefits society.


Featured image used under CC via Andrew Dunn.