Our vision for the proposed research training program at Stanford University is to create independent ELSI scholars who can conduct rigorous research on ethical, legal, social or policy implications of genetics and genomics, drawing from a wide range of conceptual frameworks and methods. The proposed program will build on collaborations, curricula and experience developed over a ten-year history of ELSI research training as a Center for Excellence in ELSI Research. There is currently no other training program like this at Stanford University, and would represent one of a handful of such interdisciplinary programs in the country. Program: Multi- and interdisciplinary 3-year postdoctoral and 2-year predoctoral training. 3 postdoctoral and 5 predoctoral fellows will be trained over a 5-year period, with a maximum of 5 fellows at any given time. Trainees: PhDs and PhD candidates recruited from diverse backgrounds, including genetics, biological sciences and engineering, informatics, philosophy, health services research and social sciences. Mentors: Multiple mentorship model, tailored to individual trainee needs and interests. Trainees are assigned a primary mentor responsible for overall development of the trainee's plans, and secondary mentors assigned based on specific career, research methods, and topic area needs. Program Director: Mildred Cho, PhD is an experienced director of the ELSI research training program component of the Center for Integration of Research on Genetics and Ethics (CIRGE), the NHGRI-funded Center for Excellence in ELSI Research at Stanford. Program Faculty: 30 Program Faculty from 10 primary departments, representing Schools of Medicine, Humanities and Sciences, Law, and Engineering who conduct ELSI-relevant research. Core Faculty members Sandra Lee, PhD, David Magnus, PhD, Hank Greely, JD and Kelly Ormond, MS are experienced mentors and directors of training programs in their own right, and colleagues who already currently collaborate with the Program Director Mildred Cho, PhD on ELSI training, research, and ethics consultation activities. Education Program: Individualized training program for each trainee that includes core courses in bioethics, and human genetics, as well as program-specific ELSI seminars, providing rich interdisciplinary interaction with faculty and trainees from the proposed program as well as from other training programs. Elective courses are available from a wide range of offerings at Stanford University. Practicum training in research ethics consultation and clinical ethics consultation is also included. Research Program: Mentored research by trainees will bring together faculty from diverse disciplines to identify and address important and novel ELSI issues through empirical or normative research. Trainees have numerous opportunities to conduct research as part of ongoing ELSI projects as well as to develop new ideas, and to present their research at professional meetings and publish in peer-reviewed journals.
The proposed research training program at Stanford University is to create independent scholars who can conduct rigorous research on ethical, legal and social implications of genetics and genomics, drawing from a wide range of conceptual frameworks and methods. The proposed program would represent one of a handful of such programs in the country. This type of researcher is necessary to study the ethical, legal, social, and policy issues that are raised b new genetic testing and genetic engineering technologies, and how they are used in medical care.