Senior Research Fellow Liminal Spaces Project

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Catriona graduated with an LLB(hons) from the University of Glasgow in 2013, and then went on to obtain an LLM from the London School of Economics and Political Science in 2014. She was awarded her PhD in Medical Law and Ethics, entitled 'The Human Embryo in vitro: A Processual Entity in Legal Stasis' in 2018. 

She is now a Senior Research Fellow within the law school, working on the Wellcome Trust funded project, 'Confronting the Liminal Spaces of Health Research Regulation.' 

Books and Reports

Catriona McMillan, Agomoni Ganguli-Mitra, Conference Report: The International Network on Feminist Approaches to Bioethics World Congress 2016, (SCRIPTed, a Journal of Law, Technology and Society, 2016)


Graeme Laurie, Edward S. Dove, Isabel Fletcher, Agomoni Ganguli-Mitra, Katy Mcmillan, Nayha Sethi, Annie Sorbie, 'Charting regulatory stewardship in health research: Making the invisible visible?', (2018), Cambridge quarterly of healthcare ethics, Vol 27, pp 333-347
Abstract: This article analyses a hitherto largely obscured feature of regulatory environments in health research, namely, the role of regulatory stewardship. Through examples drawn from research ethics committees, emerging technologies, and governance of research resources, it outlines the essential features of regulatory stewardship, and argues that this concept can demonstrate considerable added value for all parties in delivering and benefiting from efficient and effective navigation of regulatory landscapes. It offers an exposition of the normative principles and associated responsibilities of the concept. The extant invisibility of regulatory stewardship requires fuller recognition and better integration of the approach into the effective functioning of law and regulation in the health research context.

Catriona McMillan, 'Ethical judgments: Re-writing medical law', (2017), SCRIPTed: A Journal of Law, Technology and Society, Vol 14, pp 123-130

Samuel Taylor-Alexander, Edward S. Dove, Agomoni Ganguli Mitra, Graeme Laurie, Isabel Fletcher, Catriona Mcmillan, 'Beyond regulatory compression: Confronting the liminal spaces of health research regulation', (2016), Law, Innovation and Technology, Vol 8, pp 149-176
Abstract: Biomedicine and the life sciences continuously rearrange the relationship between culture and biology. In consequence, we increasingly look for a suitable regulatory response to reduce perceived uncertainty and instability. This article examines the full implications of this ‘regulatory turn’ by drawing on the anthropological concept of liminality. We offer the term ‘regulatory compression’ to characterise the effects of extant regulatory approaches on health research practices. With its focus on transformation and the ‘in-between’, liminality allows us to see how regulatory frameworks rely on a silo-based approach to classifying and regulating research objects such that they: (1) limit the flexibility necessary in clinical and laboratory research; (2) result in the emergence of unregulated spaces that lie between the bounded regulatory spheres; and (3) and curtail modes of public participation in the health research enterprise. We suggest there is a need to develop the notion of ‘processual regulation’, a novel framework that requires a temporal-spatial examination of regulatory spaces and practices as these are experienced by all actors, including the relationship of actors with the objects of regulation.

Edward S. Dove, Isabel Fletcher, Agomoni Ganguli Mitra, Graeme Laurie, Catriona McMillan, Nayha Sethi, Annie Sorbie, Samuel Taylor-Alexander, 'Conference report: 13th World Congress of the International Association of Bioethics, Edinburgh 14-17 June 2016 (IAB2016)', (2016), SCRIPTed, Vol 13, pp 202-209

Edward S. Dove, Agomoni Ganguli Mitra, Graeme Laurie, Katy Mcmillan, Samuel Taylor-Alexander, 'Elberte v. Latvia: Whose tissue is it anyway – Relational autonomy or the autonomy of relations?', (2016), Medical Law International, Vol 15, pp 77-96
Abstract: A European Court of Human Rights decision rendered in January 2015 (Elberte v. Latvia) has raised a curious question regarding the nature and scope of the right for relatives to consent to or to oppose the removal of a deceased person’s tissues. The decision suggests that Council of Europe member states must clearly define the scope of the right for relatives to express their preferences for removal of a deceased’s tissue or organs – provided such a right has been created in law – and member states must define the corresponding obligation or margin of discretion conferred on experts or other authorities to explain these rights to the relatives. Notwithstanding, this article asks whether the decision could open the door to a free-standing right for relatives to oppose removal of their deceased relative’s tissues or organs, regardless of the deceased person’s own wishes, in the name of the relatives’ human ‘right to respect for private life’.