Judy Illes


Judy Illes

Faculty of Medicine


Dr. Illes is Professor of Neurology and Canada Research Chair in Neuroethics at the University of British Columbia. She is Director of the National Core for Neuroethics at UBC, and faculty in the Centre for Brain Health at UBC and at the Vancouver Coastal Health Research Institute. She also holds affiliate appointments in the School of Population and Public Health and the School of Journalism at UBC, and in the Department of Computer Science and Engineering at the University of Washington in Seattle, WA. USA, and is a Life Member of Clare Hall, Cambridge University.

Dr. Illes’ research focuses on ethical, legal, social and policy challenges specifically at the intersection of the sciences of the central nervous system and biomedical ethics. This includes empirical studies in stem cells and regenerative medicine, neurogenetics, brain injury, aging and neurodevelopmental disorders, mental health and addictions, and the commercialization of neuroscience and personalization of health. Her research results in actionable practical guidance, frameworks for empowering the ethical development and communication of science, and evidence for informed policy-making. She also leads a robust program of research and outreach devoted to improving public literacy about brain research and engaging stakeholders on a global scale

Dr. Illes is President of the International Neuroethics Society that she founded with others in 2006, and Vice Chair of the Standing Committee on Ethics for the Canadian Institutes of Health Research. She is a member of the Dana Alliance for Brain Initiatives and a Canadian representative to IBRO US-Canada Committee. Dr. Illes was elected to the Royal Society (Life Sciences) in 2012), to the Canadian Academy of Health Sciences in 2011, and to the American Association for the Advancement of Science (Neuroscience) in 2013. Her latest book  is Neuroethics: Anticipating the Future (Oxford University Press, 2017).

Research areas of interest:

Neuroethics, Education and outreach, Integration of neuroimaging and genomics, Global health neuroethics Stem cells Cogntion, Addiction, Neurologic and mental health

Research Themes:

Reproductive Infectious Diseases Genomics and Personalized Health

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