In May 2013 the IME Board of Trustees agreed that an IME Research Committee should be formed with a view to nurturing the medical ethics research community within the UK. The founding members of the committee were: Carwyn Rhys Hooper (Chair), Anna Smajdor, Zoe Fritz and Bryan Vernon.
The first meeting of the new committee took place in January 2014. It was agreed at this meeting that the committee should develop a database of UK-based 'ethics experts' and should advertise academic 'events' (e.g. conferences) on the IME website. It was also agreed that the committee should organise an annual conference to enable academics, clinicians and students to present the results of their research activities in analytical and empirical medical ethics.
The inaugural conference ('The Cutting Edge in Biomedical Ethics Research') took place in London in September 2014. Around 90 delegates attended the conference. Many delegates were undergraduate healthcare students and postgraduate bioethics students. Academics and clinicians from across the UK also came to present their work.
Following the 2014 conference Lucy Frith, Merryn Ekberg, Silvia Camporesi and Emma Nottingham joined the committee. These new members helped the original members organise the second IME research conference ('Sharpening The Cutting Edge of Bioethics in the UK'). This conference took place in Newcastle in June 2015 and followed immediately after the UK Clinical Ethics Network annual conference. Once again around 90 delegates attended the research conference and the balance of students, clinicians and academics remained stable.
Following the second conference the IME Research Committee decided to work closely with the Postgraduate Bioethics Committee. This is the student committee that organises the annual Postgraduate Bioethics Conference. The Postgraduate Bioethics Committee is not a part of the IME, but the 10th Postgraduate Bioethics Conference (which took place in Manchester in September 2015) was financially supported by the IME.
The third IME Research Conference took place in Edinburgh on 18th June 2016 immediately after the IAB 2016 Conference. We welcomed around 90 delegates from all five continents for a very successful and productive day during which students, academics and clinicians presented their work. In July 2016, Richard Huxtable, Felicity Boardman, Tom Douglas and Nathan Emmerich joined to strengthen the work of the committee even further.
For more information about past and future conferences please click on the 'Events' page of this website. Further information about the 'Journal of Medical Ethics' and 'Medical Humanities' – the journals co-owned by the IME and the BMJ – is also available here.
Current Members are:
Dr Lucy Frith (Deputy Chair)
Dr Carwyn Rhys Hooper (Chair)