Mark Sheehan is Oxford Biomedical Research Centre (BRC) Ethics Fellow at the Ethox Centre and a James Martin Research Fellow in the Institute for Science and Ethics. He received his PhD in Philosophy from The City University of New York, where his PhD thesis was on the nature of moral judgements. Prior to his PhD, he received an MA (Hons) and a BA (Hons)/BSc from the University of Melbourne. Prior to coming to Oxford he was a lecturer in the Centre for Professional Ethics at Keele University, Ethics Fellow at the Mt. Sinai Medical School, New York and Adjunct Lecturer in the Philosophy Department at The City College of New York.
As BRC Ethics Fellow, Mark is involved in Research Ethics and Patient and Public Involvement (PPI) across the Oxford NIHR BRC themes. This involvement includes discussions with researchers about research ethics issues in their work, collaborating on research proposals with ethical components and conducting research on issues in research ethics, ethics generally and PPI that engage with the research themes within the BRC.
As a member of the Institute for Science and Ethics, Mark is involved in research identifying and critically analysing ethical issues and problems arising in stem cell science, cloning, artificial reproduction and genetics. The Institute is part of the Oxford Martin School and so he is also involved in a number of collaborations with other parts of the School.
Mark has set up and teaches (with the considerable help of colleagues) a series of sessions on research ethics aimed at researchers in the Medical Sciences Division and at the Oxford Radcliffe Hospital. From Hilary term 2011 he will lead (again with the help of colleagues) a seminar series in the Centre for Doctoral Training in Healthcare Innovation in the Institute for Biomedical engineering on the ethics and biotechnology. He also teaches Medical Ethics and Law to the Graduate Entry Medical students at the Medical School and lectures on the Medical Law and Ethics course in the Law School.
He has published in such journals as the Journal of Applied Philosophy, the Journal of Medical Ethics, the Cambridge Quarterly on Healthcare Ethics and the American Journal of Bioethics. With colleagues from the Centre for Professional Ethics at Keele University, he has just completed an EU-funded textbook on research ethics (which can be downloaded from
He is a member of the Advisory Group for National Specialised Services (AGNSS) and the Thames Valley Priorities Forum (MOBBB) for the South Central Strategic Health Authority. He also sits on the University’s Social Sciences and Humanities Inter-Divisional Research Ethics Committee and is an external member of the Goldsmith’s Research Ethics Committee. He is a Senior Research Fellow in Philosophy at St. Benet’s Hall.
Current Research Themes:
1. Research Ethics and Governance
2. Ethics and Reproductive Technologies
3. Ethical issues in Resource Allocation
4. Commercialisation and Health
5. Methodology in Applied Ethics and Bioethics