For Forthcoming News/Events see FUTURE EVENTS

Media contributions  21September 2017. 

We contributed to a series of media discussions - drawing on our research about the effects of a perceived need to go to court for decisions about withdrawing ANH from PVS/MCS patients even after families and clinical teams agreed it was not in the patient's best interests.

Contributions included to Radio 4's 'The Today Programme'  the BBC lunchtime news as well as a series of other outlets (e.g. BBC Radio Wales and the LBC radio) and talking to print journalists e.g. the New Scientist.


"Bioethicists as Advocates and Activists: Professional Boundaries and Commitments": 18th annual international symposium of the Policy, Ethics and Life Sciences (PEALS) Research Centre, Newcastle University, UK 19-20 September 2017. We presented exploring the relationship between our academic work and contributing to social and policy change

International End of Life Conference: Law, Ethics, Policy and Practice, Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada 13-15 September 2017

Pre-conference Workshop 13 September 2017: We contributed to a workshop on law reform in the end-of-life area drawing on case studies of success (or failure) in changing the law in different jurisdictions. By examining the law reform experience internationally in this area, we hope to understand better how and why the law governing end-of-life decision-making can be changed. We addressed the (disputed) legal requirement in England and Wales that cases involving withdrawal of life-prolonging treatment from patients in prolonged disorders of consciousness must receive judicial scrutiny from the Court of Protection.
We also be presented two talks during the conference - one on advance decisions and the other on legal issues relating to disorders of consciousness.
Further information here:


Neuroscience, Consciousness and ethics, August 2017

Jenny Kitzinger & Adrian Owen talked to science journalist, Ian Sample, for the Guardian's podcast about Dr Owen's new book 'Into the Gray Zone' Listen at:

Can new technologies help refine diagnosis and prognosis? What are the implications of detecting consciousness? How can science enter into dialogue with social and ethical contexts? 


A Right to Die?  Socio-legal Perspectives, Keele 18 July 2017

Celia Kitzinger will present on: "Court applications for withdrawal of artificial nutrition and hydration from patients in a permanent vegetative state: Family experiences’.  This is part of a panel entitled "Assisted Dying and Euthanasia" - although of course withdrawal of treatment in the patient's best interests is neither 'assisted dying' nor 'euthanasia' (as the talk will make clear).  Other speakers in the panel include: Dr Sue Westwood on "Older lesbians, gay men and the “right to die” debate’"; and Professor Sue Read & Dr Sotirios Santatzoglou, Keele University on ‘Exploring hospice care from the perspectives of people living with multiple sclerosis: An exploratory case study".

Summer School on Doing and Communicating Qualitative Research, London  17-20 July 2017

Celia Kitzinger gave a Keynote Address on Monday 16th July.  "Making a difference with qualitative research" The talk focused on our work to support families of patients in vegetative and minimally conscious states and to change policy and procedures concerning court applications to withdraw feeding tubes from these patients.  It addressed the ways in which we worked collaboratively with families, clinicians, lawyers, allied health professionals and advocates; and the challenges of working with artists to ‘translate’ our research findings into paintings, music and ‘soundscape’, poetry, and a shadow puppet show. It included discussion of our work with the legal profession (including our experience as the first academics ever to live-tweet from the Court of Protection) and the variety of ways in which we have engaged and addressed audiences of different stakeholders. The talk described my own experience of doing research designed from the outset to make a difference, and will consider the difference that the research has made. The – sometimes troublesome – intersection of campaigning zeal with the neo-liberal university climate was addressed, alongside the current notions of ‘impact’ and ‘impact capture’.

British Psychological Society, Faculty of Psychology of Older People National Conference 2017, Durham,  12- 13 July 2017

Workshop:  "Death is an awfully big adventure":  Cath Burley, Celia Kitzinger & Sarah Ronaghan.  

British Psychological Society Qualitative Methods in Psychology Annual Conference, Aberystwyth 5-7 July 2017

Celia Kitzinger gave a Keynote address on 6 July focusing on the qualitative methodologies used and the impact of the work of the Coma and Disorders of Consciousness Research Centre. 

Critical Physiotherapy Network Cardiff Colloquium

5th July 2017: Julie Latchem presented 'Identifying bodies: challenges in maintaining anonymity in ethnographic research' at the Critical Physiotherapy Network Cardiff Colloquium

e-learning, medicine and ethics: ‘To tech, or not to tech, is that the question?

4th July 2017 CDoC members Dr Geraldine Hastings and Julie Latchem presented on: 'Students as co-producers for inter-professional education (IPE) multimedia learning resources at Cardiff University’s Centre for Innovation Learning & Teaching Conference

Death & Dying: Exploring Christian perspectives conferences

Speaking at conferences on death and dying: York, 1st July 2017 See here for further information about the initiative as a whole and updates

UK Central Ethics Network

June 2017. Wegave a plenary talk on the minimally conscious state at the 17th UKCEN Annual Conference,  at the Royal Liverpool Institution . The theme of this year's conference is 'Family Matters' 

Coma and Consciousness Touring Arts

Exhibition2017 - Our exhibition on  'Coma and Consciousness' has toured sites across the UK (e.g. to art galleries, conferences, care homes, medical schools, community centres and churches). In 2017 the tour includes Quaker Meeting house in  London, and venues in Frome, York, and Oxford. Look out for further details of the  venues - or send an enquiry if you would be interested in hosting any part of the exhibition.

The 12th Barts Health Bereavement Conference 

Celia Kitzinger talked about "Family Experience of Bereavement when a Relative is in a Prolonged Disorder of Consciousness" The 12th Barts Health Bereavement Conference  Monday 12th June 2017, 9:00am-5:00pm Venue: Perrin Lecture Theatre, RLH To book a place on the day contact:  peter.southern@bartshealth.nh

MCA and Disability Research Symposium - University of York

26th May 2017 -  Julie Latchem spoke at this symposium, presenting her paper on 'Troubling researcher-led recruitment: the self-selection of brain injured adults who lack capacity to consent' 

Law and Ethics Training day for Fairlie Healthcare neuro-rehab care centres

30 March 2017 - We are ran a training day for all staff on best interests decision-making and continuing/discontinuing life-prolonging treatment for patients in VS/MCS. The training addressed the Mental Capacity Act and the 'best interests' balance sheet, examined new case law, explored issues of ethics, communication and the practicalities of making court applications.

Scottish Parliament Cross Party Group on End of Life

28 March Celia Kitzinger spoke to the Scottish Parliament Cross Party Group on End of Life issues 

Moral Status & the Golden Boy'Moral Status and the Golden Boy', Play, Radio 4  (14th March 2017)  

Radio 4 broadcast a play exploring some philosophical ideas about the permanent vegetative state - informed by our work and briefings to the writer - but not how we would have done it!

C3RI8RtWcAY30Rd.jpg-largeConferences with London Quakers  (28th Jaunary 2017)  and with Frome Methodist Church (11th February)

We worked with partners to host two conference on end of life decision-making, the role of churches and ecumenical perspectives on ethics and theology. Panels addressed a wide range of issues, including diverse perspectives on treatment withdrawal and exploring advance decisions. We are currently working on similar events in  Oxford for the end of April. (Tickets on eventbrite)

Screenshot 2017-02-21 09.29.17New publication: the role of IMCAs  (in Nursing in Critical Care)