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The University of Southampton
Clinical Ethics, Law and Society

Dr Mirjam Plantinga

‘Technologically the sky is the limit. The challenge for the upcoming years is to find out when and how technological innovations can improve healthcare.
For this, the input of patients and the public is crucial’ - Dr M Plantinga

Mirjam Plantinga
Dr Mirjam Plantinga

Mirjam's background is in economics and philosophy and she received a PhD in behavioural and social sciences at the University of Groningen, the Netherlands.

Mirjam currently works as a senior researcher at the University Medical Center Groningen (UMCG) as part of the ELSI research group, which conducts research on Ethical, Legal, and Social issues in Genetics. The program focuses on innovation and improvement of clinical genetic patient care as well as the application of new genetic knowledge in other medical specialties, primary care and in public health. Important current research lines are the implementation of a population based preconception screening test and the development of a recontacting policy in clinical genetics.

The UMCG ELSI group has complementary research interests to CELS and during the tenure of Anneke Lucassen’s visiting professorship in Groningen, the two groups have built up a programme of collaborative research. 

Part of the collaboration with the ELSI research group is a rolling programme of joint PhD studentships. The first doctoral student, Juliette Schuurmans, started in 2015 and the second, Julia el Mecky, started in 2016. Mirjam coordinates the joint supervision of these PhDs at both sites. She is a visiting research fellow in CELS where she contributes to research activities, education, and public engagement, thereby enhancing the collaboration between the two research groups.

One of Mirjam’s education activities for CELS was as module lead of the MSc Genomic Medicine ELSI module; one of the optional modules of the MSc Genomic Medicine programme that is delivered by the Faculty of Medicine of the University of Southampton.      For more information about this module, please see the link below.

Another focus of her work is on public engagement and patient involvement. In 2018, together with Gillian Crawford, Mirjam organised a research engagement activity ‘Engaging with parents of the future about the offer of genetic screening before pregnancy’ funded by the University of Southampton’s Public Engagement with Research unit (PERu).

Research interests:

Healthcare innovation, responsible implementation, public engagement, patient involvement, e-health

Contact details: 


twitter: @MirjamPlantinga



If you are interested in doing a PhD with CELS and ELSi group, Groningen, please contact Lisa Scott in the first instance. 


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