Professor Julian Savulescu, Director of the Programme on the Ethics of the New Biosciences, has received two awards in the space of one week, recognising his world-leading work in the field of ethics.
On 10 June, Professor Savulescu received a 2009 Distinguished Alumni Award from Monash University, in Australia, where he completed his medical degree and a PhD in philosophy. And on 17 June the Australian Prime Minister, Kevin Rudd, presented Professor Savulescu with an award from The Weekend Australian Magazine's series Next 100 Emerging Leaders. He won the category for the top emerging thinker, which covered ideas and different ways of looking at both the world and how we live, from policy and political systems to philosophy. The Magazine launched the competition to "identify people who are setting agendas and inspiring others through their work and ideas".
Professor Savulescu is keen to promote discussion about often controversial topics as a means to address some of the more practical concerns of the public and policy makers. Sanctioning performance-enhancing drugs in sport, genetic enhancement or cloning once it is safe are just some of the issues that he debates. In response to receiving the two recent awards, Professor Savulescu said: "These two awards recognise the advances we have made in Oxford to promote the development of biomedical ethics and a secular approach to thinking about problems in contemporary society."