Robert Winston, professor of science and society is also a medical doctor, scientist and television presenter. His research has developed refined gynecological surgical techniques helping improve fertility treatments, and he is widely recognized for trying to communicate the excitement of science to the public.
Lord Robert Winston
Robert Winston is both professor of Science and society and Emeritus Professor of Fertility studies at Imperial College London, a university with one of the strongest international science bases. The college concentrates on advancing the understanding and interaction between scientists and the public through a wide range of initiatives. In August 2009 the reach out lab opened offering stimulating practical science to schoolchildren.
Robert runs a research program in the institute of Reproductive and Developmental Biology, on improvements in transgenic technology in animal models, his long-term aim is to improve human transplantation. His research has led to the development of gynecological microsurgery and various improvements in reproductive medicine, which was later adopted internationally. His work on pre-implantation genetic diagnosis enabled families carrying gene defects to have children free of fatal illness. This includes healing families with sex-linked disorders, single gene defects and chromosomal abnormalities; he has held twenty six patents.
Robert has published roughly three hundred scientific publications in journals on reproduction and embryology and has published fourteen books. He also regularly writes or hosts science programs for BBC and Discovery networks. Some of his work include “SuperDoctors” (received a nomination for the Grierson Award), “The Human Body” (three BAFTAs, Emmy nomination and a Peabody award), “The Superhuman” (Emmy Nomination and Wellcome Award for Medicine and Biology, 2000), “Human Instinct” (Golden Panda Award, Shanghai, 2004 and Emmy nomination). He won the VLV award for the best individual contribution to British television in 2003.
He has been a visiting professor at a number of American, Australian and European universities. Throughout his career Winston has been awarded honorary doctorates at twenty universities. He has received awards like the Wellcome Senior Research Fellowship 1973-77, a Blair-Bell Lectureship RCOG, 1978. He won the Edwin Stevens Medal (the Royal Society of Medicine) in 2003, was the North of England Zoological Society’s gold medalist in 2004 and won the Al Hammadi Gold Medal at the Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh, 2005.
Robert Winston’s activities in the House of Lords include speaking regularly on education, science, medicine and the arts. He was Chairman of the Lords Select Committee on Science and Technology 1999-2002. He is a board member and Vice-chairman of the Parliamentary Office of Science and Technology. In June 200 he was voted ‘peer of the year’ by his fellow parliamentarians.
- “Bad Ideas?”
Human beings are clever. We are born with the instinct to create and invent. But have our creative ideas always produced desirable results?
Prof Winston argues that virtually every idea we have had – be it to do with farming, writing, transport, weapons, even medicine – has at least at one level – made humankind more vulnerable.’
- Modifying humans: where does genetics stop?
The first attempts at in vitro fertilization were, more than 250 years ago. Advances in gene technology means that we can not only select embryos for ‘desirable’ characteristics but may very soon be able to enhance humans by genetic modification. Will ethical considerations prevent us from the next step – manufacturing stronger, more gifted and very intelligent children? Or will our imperfect knowledge of how our abilities are inherited mean that they there are some major unpleasant surprises in store?
- Reading the human mind: what makes us happy?
In our search to try to understand the nature of human consciousness, shall we ever really be able to define what makes us happy? To some extent, the ability to be happy is inherited, but social scientists have emphasized that various environmental influences – health, a stable society, economic advantages play a major role. Professor Winston examines the role of brain imaging, hormone study, sexuality, child development, pharmacology and psychological research to understand how science may help us to be happier.
- “Nature v Nurture”
- “Public Engagement – Why Bother?”
Many more… Robert Winston is happy to discuss with the client what is needed and can adapt accordingly.
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