About Associate Professor Ainsley Newson

An internationally recognised academic in bioethics whose research focuses on ethical aspects of human genetics, genomics and reproduction: in the clinic, in the lab and beyond. Trained in bioethics, law and science.

Associate Professor Ainsley Newson is an internationally recognised scholar in bioethics. She began her career at the University of Melbourne, where she gained a Bachelor of Science (first class honours) in 1997, a PhD in Bioethics in 2002 and a Bachelor of Laws (honours) in 2004.

Associate Professor Newson researches ethical aspects of human genetics, genomics and reproduction and their applications. She has particular interests in the appropriate implementation of novel genetic and reproductive technologies and their application in families and populations. She is particularly interested in the use of genomic technologies in prenatal and paediatric contexts, as well as methodological innovations in bioethics research. Her work is currently focusing on population screening (including pre-conception screening), genomic data sharing, the value of genetic kinship and ethical aspects of personalised and precision medicine. She currently supervises PhD projects on ethics and genomic data sharing, population screening, ethics and high risk birth choice, autonomy in genomics and genetics education. She has previously supervised students working on ethics and genetic databases, ethics and consumer genetic testing, ethics and genetic enhancement in sport and ethics and appearance-affecting genetic conditions.
Associate Professor Newson has worked at Sydney Health Ethics (previously VELiM) since 2013 and has been Deputy Director at this Centre since 2017. Prior to that, Ainsley worked in the United Kingdom for almost a decade. Associate Professor Newson is a Lead or Co-Investigator on grants totalling more than $40million. Associate Professor Newson has published over 70 peer-reviewed journal papers as well as a selection of other publications. She has received funding from the NHMRC and ARC, as well as the European Union and the National Institute of Health Research (UK). She is also a keen participant in media and public engagement on bioethical issues. Her research is influential on the practice of clinical genetics.

Associate Professor Newson currently co-Chairs the Education, Ethics and Social Issues Committee of the Human Genetics Society of Australasia and is a member of committees including the ELSI Working Group of the Commonwealth's Genomics Futures Mission and the NSW Clinical Ethics Advisory Panel.

Selected publications

For a comprehensive list of Associate Professor Newson's publicatons, please visit her Sydney Medical School profile page.