Post Doctoral Researcher, School of Law and Criminology

Maynooth, Ireland
11 Aug 2022
End of advertisement period
08 Sep 2022
Academic Discipline
Social Sciences, Law
Contract Type
Fixed Term
Full Time

Department : School of Law and Criminology
Vacancy ID : 017581
Closing Date : 08-Sep-2022

The Role

Due to recent success in obtaining European Research Council Starting Grant funding, we are seeking a post-doctoral researcher (36 months) to join the PatentsInHumans project team. PatentsInHumans is a 5-year European Research Council Starting Grant funded project led by the Principal Investigator, Prof Aisling McMahon, which will commence on 1st November 2022.  

PatentsInHumans investigates the role of bioethics in the patenting and licensing of technologies related to the human body, including, for example, medicines, medical devices, isolated elements of the human body in Europe etc. The Project explores two related central research questions, namely: What are the potential bioethical implications that the grant and/or licensing of patents over technologies related to the human body have for how we treat, use, or modify our bodies? And how can such bioethical considerations be further incorporated within patent decision-making in Europe to facilitate a system where the patenting and licensing of such technologies addresses potential bioethical issues at stake? To investigate these questions, the project develops a novel cross disciplinary institutional analysis combining doctrinal and empirical methods to evaluate the key legal, structural and cultural barriers leading to the current marginalisation of bioethics in European patent decision-making for technologies related to the human body. It aims to radically reconceptualise the current system to formulate pathways to assimilate bioethics within patent decision-making for such technologies, with important and timely policy and conceptual implications.  

As part of this project, we seek to appoint a Postdoctoral Researcher. Under the supervision of Prof Aisling McMahon, the successful candidate will conduct doctrinal and empirical analysis to gain insights over the types of bioethical issues posed by patents over such technologies, and to develop an understanding, to what extent such bioethical issues are currently considered, if at all within the relevant systems in Europe. As part of this work, they will conduct semi-structured interviews and focus groups with relevant experts and stakeholders to gain qualitative understandings of the bioethical implications posed by patents over such technologies.

The successful candidate will also support the Principal Investigator in carrying out other tasks of the project.

The Postdoctoral Researcher will join a dynamic, well-supported multidisciplinary team within the research-intensive School of Law and Criminology in Maynooth University. They will also be supported in their personal career development plan throughout the project by Prof McMahon.  


Post-doctoral Researcher (2022): €39,523 - €45,609 p.a. (6 points) with annual increments  

Appointments will be made in accordance with public sector pay provisions.