Research Fellow, Synthetic Biology, Western Sydney University

Ref 1427/21 Research Fellow, ARC Centre of Excellence in Synthetic Biology, Institute for Culture and Society

Western Sydney University is a modern, forward-thinking, research-led university, located at the heart of Australia’s fastest-growing and economically significant region, Western Sydney. Boasting 11 campuses – many in Western Sydney CBD locations – and more than 200,000 alumni, 49,500 students and 3,500 staff, the University has 14 Schools with an array of well-designed programs and degrees carefully structured to meet the demands of future industry. 

The University is ranked in the top two per cent of universities worldwide, and as a research leader, over 85 per cent of the University’s assessed research is rated at ‘World Standard’ or above.  

About Us 

The Institute for Culture and Society carries out research on the transformations in culture and society in the context of contemporary global change. It operates as a leading international centre for interdisciplinary, engaged and collaborative scholarship in the humanities and social sciences for a digital age. Research at the Institute for Culture and Society is organised around an integrated program of research focusing on a number of broad themes including Automated Worlds; Borders & Diversity; Cultural Infrastructures; Environment and Technology; and Urban Futures. 

The Institute is one of four Research Institutes at the University, and the only one predominantly focused on the discipline area of the Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences (HASS). 

An important role of the Institute is to help develop the University’s overall research performance through external income generation and high-quality publications. It also conducts profile-raising activities through organising major conferences, developing a network of similar research entities nationally and internationally, hosting visiting scholars, and forging strategic partnerships with external organisations and communities. Public and community engagement is an integral aspect of the Institute’s work. 

The Institute for Culture & Society hosts the Western Sydney University node of the ARC Centre of Excellence in Synthetic Biology (CoESB) ( The CoESB is a new, cross-disciplinary, and national research centre, which aims to create the knowledge and strategies necessary for Australia to develop a vibrant bioeconomy building on the nation’s strengths in agriculture. 

The Centre will combine engineering with molecular biology to design and construct novel biological systems that can convert biomass from agriculture or waste streams to biofuel, bioplastics and other high-value chemicals. The Centre brings together leading researchers in the humanities, social and technological sciences in an international industry, research and civil society network. 

Funded by the Australian Research Council for seven years from 2020 to 2026, CoESB is hosted at Macquarie University in Sydney, Australia, with nodes in seven other Australian universities (University of Western Australia, Queensland University of Technology, University of Queensland, University of Newcastle, Australian National University, University of NSW, and Western Sydney University). Research in the CoESB is focused upon Centre’s three capabilities: Systems Bioengineering, Industrial Translation, and Social Dimensions. 

The Role – Research Fellow in CoESB 

The Research Fellow will be actively engaged with research associated with the Social Dimensions capability, which embeds expertise and analysis from law, ethics, philosophy, the arts, political science, and the social and behavioural sciences within the science and engineering of synthetic biology. With a focus on ethical issues and values, legal frameworks and cultural shifts, this team of scholars explores some of the central questions arising from the CoE, such as what problem are we trying to solve and is synthetic biology even the right solution? And how does the promise translate into practice, policy and benefits for society? The Research Fellow will work with Dr Josh Wodak, the CoESB node leader at Western Sydney University. 

The position will conduct and manage primary research on ethical issues and values, and cultural shifts with respect to synthetic biology, with a particular focus on biodiversity conservation and/or climate change mitigation; publish research in high-quality outlets; engage and translate research with collaborators, international colleagues and industry partners; assist with project management and administration of project research; supervise research assistants and, where appropriate, co-supervise PhD students. This research-focused role does not include a teaching load, but opportunities for developing and maintaining a teaching profile may be available during the course of the Research Fellowship. 

This is a Full-Time, Fixed-Term position for 3 years based at the Parramatta Campus.

Remuneration Package: Academic Level B $125,306 to $147,860 p.a., (comprising Salary of $105,885 to $125,030 p.a., plus Superannuation and Leave Loading) 

Position enquiries: Dr Josh Wodak via email 

To Apply 

To be considered for this position, please submit: 

1. Your CV 
2. A 2-page cover letter outlining your experience and how you will contribute to research within the Social Dimensions capability, about ethical issues and values, and cultural shifts with respect to synthetic biology, with a particular focus on biodiversity conservation and/or climate change mitigation. 
3. Response to the selection criteria 

Closing Date: 8:30pm, Monday 31 May 2021.

Please click here to view Position Description 

How to Apply:

Western Sydney University is committed to diversity and social inclusion. Applications from people of culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds; equity target groups including women, people with disabilities, people who identify as LGBTIQ; and people of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander descent, are encouraged. 

If you require assistance in using the System, please email or phone the Recruitment Helpline on (02) 9852 5422. Please note, we do not accept applications for roles to the email.  This site is optimised for all the latest browsers including Internet Explorer 11.0, Edge, Safari, Firefox and Chrome. Note that earlier versions of any of the browsers mentioned are supported, but likely to demonstrate slower response times.

JOB – Asst. Director / Lecturer in Bioethics & Society

Kings-College-London-LogoKing’s College London seeks to appoint to a lectureship in Social Science, Health & Medicine (Bioethics & Society), to act as Assistant Director in our new MA in Bioethics & Society and to contribute to our undergraduate and postgraduate teaching.

Applicants should have a strong background in sociology, anthropology, philosophy or a cognate discipline; and a specialism relevant to bioethics. Applicants must have a completed doctorate, a developing research strategy, evidence of a developing record of high quality publications, and relevant teaching experience.

About the MA in Bioethics and Society

The MA in Bioethics & Society provides a firm grounding in the knowledge and analytical techniques necessary for sound ethical reasoning about end-of-life care, assisted reproduction, biomedical research, genetics, enhancement, justice in health and health care, and many other topics. Based in an institution with unrivalled excellence across the field of medicine and health policy, and with close links with the worlds of health policy and biomedical research, the programme offers students first hand exposure to health practitioners and scientists and allows them to build crucial professional networks. The MA in Bioethics & Society will lay the foundation for future careers; for example in government, national and international NGOs, or university teaching and research in bioethics or social sciences.It will also enhance existing careers in clinical practice, biomedical research, public health, and health policy.

Job Details

The person appointed will be expected to play a key role in the management of the MA in Bioethics & Society and lead or contribute to taught modules at both undergraduate and postgraduate levels. As Assistant Director of the MA programme, the person appointed will be expected to engage in active marketing and recruitment activities, both nationally and internationally; management of admissions, communication with students; and planning, organization and delivery of the taught programme.

Experience or familiarity with the academic environment in the UK is an advantage. A commitment to collegiality is essential, as is the ability and willingness to engage in constructive dialogue with medical and biomedical researchers and practitioners, and with policy makers.

For an informal discussion of the post please contact Professor Ilina Singh via email at


The appointment will be made, dependent on relevant qualifications and experience, within the Grade 6/7 scale, currently £33,654 to £48,264, per annum, inclusive of £2,323 London Allowance, per annum.

Post Duration

Fixed-term contract for 3 years.

How to Apply

To apply for the post, please click on the ‘Further details’ link below to open the job pack. The job pack contains detailed instructions on how to make your application. Please ensure that you follow the instructions carefully, as incomplete or incorrect applications may not be considered. All correspondence MUST clearly state the job title and reference number A6-7/DAF/617/13-JT..

Further details

ONLINE SUMMER SCHOOL – Ethics of Emerging Technologies

EthicsschoolEthicSchool has announced a virtual summer school on Ethics of Emerging Technologies. Here are the pertinent details:

  • Dates: 9-13 September 2013:  14.00-17.00 CEST (Central European Summer Time)
  • Location: Internet – webinar system (for registered participants)
  • Participants: max. 20 per session
  • Free of charge – voluntary contributions such as lectures, scientific committee membership, open access teaching materials & literature or sponsorship are welcome.

To register for the course, please visit the course’s official webpage. The preliminary programme is listed below (with a PDF available here).

Preliminary Programme

Monday 9 September 2013 – Introductions

14.00‐17.00 CEST: lectures, Q&A

  • Introduction to EthicSchool, welcome to Western participants
  • Lecture 1: Introduction in Applied Ethics – Ethics and Law
  • Lecture 2: Engagement, Communication and Dialogue on Emerging Technologies
  • Lecture 3: Recent trends in Social Studies of Science and related areas

Tuesday 10 September 2013 – Nanotechnologies in multicultural perspective

14.00‐17.00 CEST: lectures, exercise

  • Lecture 4: Nano and Health from a non‐Western perspective
  • Lecture 5: Sustainable Nanotechnologies for All: barriers and opportunities
  • Exercise 1: Case study of Responsible Nano‐innovation with the Nanometer self‐assessment tool

Wednesday 11 September 2013 – Conflicting nanointerests

14.00‐17.00 CEST: lecture, exercise, master class

  • Lecture 6: Nanoelectronics, Peace and Security
  • Exercise 2: Dialogue on nanoethics using the Ethics Toolkit
  • Masterclass 1: Participants present their research in 5‐10 minutes and receive feedback from lecturers

Thursday 12 September 2013: What it means to be Human

14.00‐17.00 CEST: lecture, exercise, master class

  • Lecture 7: Perspectives on Human Nature and Dignity
  • Exercise 3: DEMOCS card game on Human Enhancement
  • Master class 2: Participants present their research in 5‐10 minutes and receive feedback from lecturers

Friday 13 September 2013: Nature and Techno Revisited

14.00‐17.00 CEST: lectures, master class

  • Lecture 8: From Bio to Techno (e.g., synthetic biology, 3D printing biological materials)
  • Lecture 9: From Techno to Bio (e.g., robotics, AI)
  • Master class 3: Participants present their research in 5‐10 minutes and receive feedback from lecturers
  • Wrap‐up

CALL FOR PAPERS – The Ethical Biologist, UConn

Call for Submissions: The Ethical Biologist

Although ‘bioethics’ is often used to describe the application of ethical and moral theories to biological sciences and technology, in its broadest sense, the term ‘bioethics’ refers to the study of the ethics of life.  This interdisciplinary field promises to become increasingly important to all people as technology and science becomes increasingly prevalent in daily life.  The Ethical Biologist is a new peer-reviewed undergraduate research journal based at the University of Connecticut that seeks to highlight new ideas in bioethics. The journal is completely student-run and student refereed.

We are currently accepting submissions for our inaugural issue, to be published in the spring of 2013.  We encourage the submission of pieces that address current issues in bioethics, or that consider the behavioral, biological, environmental, political, legal, or socioeconomic factors that influence bioethical issues.

Until 11:59 p.m. (EST) on December 16, 2012, we will be accepting:

●      Original Academic Research Papers (2500-3500 words) – Pieces that address a specific area of bioethical study;

●      Perspectives (1200 word maximum) – Opinion pieces that analyze a recent development in bioethics;

●      Field notes (2000 word maximum) – Journal-style pieces based on relevant personal experience and written with a more personal voice.

Please turn in all submissions to by December 16, 2012. If you have any questions, please contact us directly.  Our website, which is currently undergoing maintenance, will be available for more information beginning in October.  Visit us at

JOB – Bioethics Researcher in Law, Oxford

STEMBANCC Bioethics Researcher in Law
University of Oxford -Centre for Health, Law & Emerging Technologies Centre for Health, Law & Emerging Technologies (HeLEX), Department of Public Health, Old Road Campus, Headington

Grade 7: £29,249 – £35,938 p.a.

We are seeking a full-time Researcher to provide research governance and bioethical support to the STEMBANCC project under the supervision of Dr Jane Kaye at HeLEX. STEMBANCC is a flagship inter-disciplinary research project involving academic and commercial partners and is funded under the Innovative Medicines Initiative (IMI). The objective of the project is to develop a human induced pluripotent stem cell (iPSC) bioresource to be used as a platform for drug discovery. This ambitious project brings together internationally renowned scientists and clinicians to study and develop new therapies for 8 major diseases of our time: Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, Autism, Schizophrenia, Bipolar, Migraine, Pain and Diabetes.

You will work with researchers in STEMBANCC to identify the research governance and ethical issues that emerge as the project progresses, developing policy and practical solutions to resolve them. In addition, you will carry out research into the broader ethical, legal and social issues around stem cell research. You will possess a PhD in science, ethics, policy or law. You will have a proven track record of high quality academic publications and conducting independent academic research in this field. You will have excellent communication skills (both in written and spoken English) and ability to communicate in an accessible and informative manner with a wide range of people from different disciplines as well as with patients and the general public. Along with the ability to work as part of an interdisciplinary team you will also possess excellent analytical, organisational and research skills. In this position you will be expected to be an active and enthusiastic member of HeLEX and the STEMBANCC project.

The post is offered full-time for 3 years. You will be based at the Old Road Campus, Headington, Oxford. The closing date for applications is 12 noon on Thursday 13 September 2012. Interviews will be held on 25 September or 2 October.

Job description and selection criteria can be found at

Application information can be found at

FINAL CALL FOR PAPERS – ISEE Sessions at the Pacific APA, Spring 2013

International Society for Environmental Ethics LogoSubmissions are invited for the International Society for Environmental Ethics (ISEE) sessions at the 2013 Pacific Division Meeting of the American Philosophical Association (APA).  The upcoming meeting will be held in the always beautiful San Francisco, CA, USA from Wednesday, March 27th to Sunday, March 31st.

ISEE invites submissions of individual papers (approximately 20 minutes running time) or proposals for themed sessions (particular topics, author-meets-critics, etc.; 2 hours running time).  Submissions are encouraged from those working interdisciplinarily and include but are not limited to the following areas:

  • animal studies,
  • green religion,
  • sustainability,
  • climate ethics,
  • conservation ethics,
  • environmental education,
  • environmental justice,
  • environmental policy,
  • ecophenomenology,
  • environmental pragmatism,
  • food, water, & agricultural ethics,
  • geoengineering, synthetic biology, & nanotechnology,
  • feminist, post-colonial, and queer studies.

Submission Procedure:

  • For individual paper submissions, please submit either: 1) a full paper, or 2) a 300-word abstract.
  • For themed sessions, please submit the proposed session title, a brief description of the session, names of presenters, and titles for each paper. Paper abstracts (of up to 300 words) are strongly encouraged.  Participants should be confirmed as willing to attend if the session goes forward.

Materials should be submitted in Microsoft Word or PDF format to William Grove-Fanning: williamgrovefanning@hotmail.comThe deadline for submitting materials and proposals is September 1st, 2012.  Early submissions are most welcome.  Decisions will be made by late September.