Lauren Notini

Lauren Notini
Fellow in Clinical and Organizational Bioethics (2015-17), University of Toronto Joint Centre for Bioethics

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Lauren Notini is one of the Fellows in Clinical and Organizational Bioethics with the University of Toronto Joint Centre for Bioethics. Lauren conducted her PhD project in Bioethics at the University of Melbourne, Parkville, Australia, and recently submitted her thesis for examination.


Lauren's PhD thesis is an empirically informed analysis of the ethical issues surrounding elective appearance-altering facial surgeries performed on children for cosmetic and/or psychosocial reasons. As part of her project, Lauren interviewed 22 surgeons to investigate how they make decisions regarding whether to perform these surgeries and justify their decisions in ethical terms. Lauren has presented her PhD research at a number of interdisciplinary conferences, both in Australia and internationally.


Prior to beginning her PhD, Lauren completed a Bachelor of Biomedical Science (2007-2009) and a Bachelor of Science (Honours) (2010) at the University of Melbourne, followed by a Master of Bioethics (2011) at Monash University. She has worked as an ethics research assistant at the University of Melbourne and taught clinical ethics and human research ethics to medical students at Monash University. She has also completed a clinical ethics placement under the supervision of the Children's Bioethics Centre at the Royal Children's Hospital, Melbourne.


Lauren's main bioethics research passion lies in paediatric bioethics, including children's assent and dissent to medical procedures and research participation and the relative roles of children, parents, and healthcare professionals in decisions about children's healthcare. Lauren also has a special interest in the ethical issues surrounding elective medical interventions aimed at altering individuals for cosmetic and/or psychosocial reasons, including circumcision and other genital-altering surgeries, limb-lengthening surgery, and transplants which are not physically life-saving but potentially life-enhancing, such as face transplants and hand transplants. She also has experience in using qualitative research methods and empirical data to help inform normative ethical analysis.


Lauren hopes to become a practicing healthcare ethicist and continue conducting bioethics research and teaching bioethics. Born and raised in Melbourne, Australia, she is looking forward to learning more about how clinical and organizational ethics is practiced in Canada and seeing some snow.