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Dr Simon Whitby

PositionSenior Lecturer
LocationRoom P1.1 Pemberton Building
DepartmentDivision of Peace Studies and International Development (PSID)
Feedback HoursWednesday 13:00 - 14:00
Telephone+44 (0)1274 23 4187

Research Interests (key words only)

International Relations, Security Studies, Dual-Use Biological and Chemical Security, Ethics, Pedagogy

PhD Supervision

  • Dr. Piers Millett
  • Dr. Catherine Rhodes
  • Dr. Neil Davison
  • Dr. Masamichi Minehata
  • Dr. Michael Crowley
  • Dr. Tatyana Novossiolova
  • Dr. Gerald Walther
  • Dr. Giulio Mancini

Teaching and Supervisory Responsibilities

Following the publication of a multi-authored Guide on Biological Security,  Preventing Biological Threats: What You Can Do, and its related Team-Based Learning Handbook (Novossiolova, T), Dr Simon Whitby currently delivers his teaching Modules on International Politics and Security Studies (MA), Security: Theories and Concepts (BA, Level 5, Second Year) and Secuirty: Threats and Analysis (Level 6, Third Year) by Team-Based Learning. (He is currently in process of transitioning his other teaching commitments (Introduction to International Relations (Level 4, First Year) and Study Skills (Level 4, First Year) to TBL format. 

Including those listed above, these modules address epistemology, methdologies, ontologies, and conceptual, theoretical and emprical International Relations and Security Studies issues including a range of general international security problematics, and in particular they address theories and concepts in international relations, arms control, disarmament, including biological disarmament, biological security  and ‘dual-use’.  Simon is currently a TBL Implemented Unider the University of Bradford's 'CATALYST' project for rolling out TBL across the Institution. The University of Bradford's 'CATALYST' Project is a joint initiative between Bradford, Anglia Ruskin (Cambridge University) and Nottingham Trent University.  In accordance with The University of Bradford's 'CATALYST' Project this approach deploys a Team-Based Learning Approach to Learning, Teaching and Assessment on several Modules at Bradford.   

The CATALYS Project is involves the use in class of something called 'SCALE-UP' (Student-Centred Active Learning Environment with Upside-down Pedagogies) as well as TBL (Team-Based learning). This is sometimes referred to as a 'flipped' classroom approach.  This is recognized in research-based pedagogy as a ‘transformative’ approach to learning and teaching. Students are organised into and remain in small permanent teams throughout the Module. Students study the core knowledge-based module content out of class, in other words students must prepare ahead of class; their preparatory reading, and preliminary knowledge and understanding, is then assessed through a series of individual readiness assurance tests (i-RAT). This is achieved through the answering of MCQs (Multiple Choice Question). These assessments for learning taken at regular intervals throughout the academic year / semester across six-sub units.  

As part of the assessment process Students also discuss the i-RAT assessment in small teams and retake the assessment as a team (t-RAT: team readiness assurance test).  Students then apply their new knowledge to a number of formative and summative – synoptic -  in-class team application exercises during the academic year. Finally, students are assessed that they can individually meet learning outcomes through both continuous assessment – as set out above – and through a summative module essay question requirement at the end of the stage. Peer assessment is also part of this process.

Administrative Responsibilities

Dr Whitby is currently MA Admissions Tutor for PSID MA Programmes


Since 2009, Whitby has worked at the interface between the life science and national security communities to address the threat of deliberate disease in the context of rapidly advancing science and dual-use technology.

Whitby’s work has focused on contributing to the discourse on dual-use biosecurity and bioethics and thus on raising awareness at government, civil society, life science and industry levels about the ethical, legal and social implications of life science research.

He has been actively engaged in building a world-wide capability in dual-use bioethics to engage the scientific community in awareness-raising programmes about the importance of responsible conduct of life science research. Significantly he has developed a novel and innovative online distance learning Master's level train-the-trainer programme and short courses in Applied Dual-Use Biosecurity / Bioethics.

Study History

Qualifications (including class and subject):

  • 1989    B.A. Hons; Peace Studies; University of Bradford
  • 1993    M.Phil; Peace Studies; University of Bradford
  • 2000    Ph.D; Peace Studies; University of Bradford

Professional History

  • 2017: Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy (SFHEA)
  • 2016 - 2017: Senior Lecturer
  • 2011 - 2015: Lecturer
  • 2011 - 2016: Director of Bradford Disarmament Research Centre (BDRC)
  • 2006 - 2011: RCUK Academic Research Fellow/Senior Research Fellow, Department of Peace Studies, University of Bradford
  • 2003 - 2005: Senior Research Fellow, Department of Peace Studies, University of Bradford
  • 2000 - 2002: Research Fellow, Department of Peace Studies, University of Bradford
  • 1994 - 1999: Research Assistant, Department of Peace Studies, University of Bradford

Professional Activities

With Malcolm Dando (Bradford) and Shamin Patel (Linnaeus University, Sweden), Simon delivered a 3-hour Team-Based Learning Workshop to Practicing Neuroscientists titled: Team-Based Learning: Social, Ethical and Legal Responsibilities of Life Scientists at the First Human Brain Project Curriculum Workshop Series titled Research, Ethics and Societal Impact - Responsible Research: How to Deal with Animals and ICT in Science - An Ethical Approach. 10-12 July 2017, Karolinska Institute, Stockholm, Sweden.

Whitby attended the Biological Coordination Meeting at the Canadian Mission to the United Nations in Geneva, Switzerland, November 2016.

Research Areas

Throughout the period 2015 to 2017, Dr Simon Whitby has continued his academic, applied academic, and policy work at the interface between the life-science, international security, ethics and law discourses, and has expanded his research and teaching profile with work he (with others) have pioneered on transformative research and teaching on dual-use bioethics and biological security.

Current Projects

Dr Whitby is currently part of the Catalyst Project to roll out Team-Based Learning Teaching across the University of Bradford (with Anglia Ruskin, Cambridge, and Nottingham Trent).



Whitby, S., Novossiolova, T., Walther, G., and Dando, M. (eds.) Preventing Biological Threats: What You Can Do (Bradford: University of Bradford, 2016).

Recent and Forthcoming Publications:

  • Whitby, S. and Dando, M. (2018) Ethics, Neuroscience and Public Policy: Can Team-Based Learning be a Means to Raise Awareness of the Problem of Dual-Use Among Practicing Neuroscientists. In Lever, A. and Poama, A. (Eds.) Handbook of Ethics and Public Policy, Routledge, London. (in press)
  • Whitby, S. and Mancini, G (2017) The Securitisation of Life Science: Awareness-raising and Education in a Consequentialist Context. (forthcoming)
  • Whitby, S. (2017) Science Policy Advice and Epistemic Communities: Bringing and End to the Use of Chemical Anti-Crop Agents and Herbicides in Vietnam (forthcoming)
  • Whitby, S. (2017) The Future of Chemical Weapons: Advances in Developments of Anti-Plant Agents, paper commissioned by the Royal Society of Chemistry (forthcoming)
  • Whitby, S. (2017) Toward a Transformative Biological Security Pedagogy: Team-Based Learning and Threshold Concepts in Awareness Raising and Education, (forthcoming)
  • Simon Whitby (Editor), Tatyana Novossiolova (Editor), Gerald Walther (Editor), Malcolm R. Dando (Editor) (2015): Preventing Biological Threats: What You Can Do: A Guide to Biological Security Issues and How to Address Them
  • Simon Whitby, with Kathryn McLaughlin, and Graham S. Pearson (eds) (2014) The BioWeapons Monitor, BioWeapons Prevention Project, December, ISBN 978 1 85143 275-2, available at:
  • Simon Whitby , Dana Perkins , Judi Sture (2013) Biosafety, Biosecurity and Internationally Mandated Regulatory Regimes: Compliance Mechanisms for Education and Global Health Security, Medicine, Conflict and Survival (forthcoming).
  • Simon Whitby with Masamichi Minehata, Judi Sture, Nariyoshi Shinomiya, and Malcolm Dando, (2013) Promoting Education of Dual-Use Issues for Life Scientists: A Comprehensive Approach, Special Issue on Dual-Use: Journal of Disaster Research Vol.8(4) August (forthcoming).
  • Simon Whitby, (2013) Crops Agents, Phytopathology, and Ethical Review in Rappert, B., and Selgelid, M. (Eds), On the Dual Uses of Science and Ethics: Principles, Practices, and Prospects, Australian National University (ANU) e-press (forthcoming).
  • Simon Whitby, with Gerald Walther (eds) (2012) The BioWeapons Monitor, BioWeapons Prevention Project, December, , ISBN: 978-1-85143-270-7.
  • Tatyana Novossiolova and Simon Whitby (2012), PhD, Biosecurity Training and Competence: Preserving Life Science Research Integrity and Ensuring Compliance, Yearbook of Biosecurity Education.  Bradford: University of Bradford, pp. 114-120. ISBN 978 1 85143 271 4
  • Simon Whitby, (2012) Strengthening the Biological Weapons Convention: preserving academic and scientific freedom. Science, People & Politics (ISSN 1751-598X).
  • Simon Whitby (2011) Dual-Use Biosecurity Pedagogy: Teaching in a New Area of Applied Ethics, Medicine Conflict and Survival, (Eds) Simon Whitby and Judi Sture .
  • Simon Whitby and Malcolm R. Dando, (2011), Effective Implementation of the BTWC: The Key Role of Awareness Raising and Education, Bradford Review Conference Paper No. 26.
  • Tatyana Novossiolova and Simon Whitby, (2011) Building Capacity in Dual Use Biosethics: Biosecurity Education for Life Scientists, New Security Challenges, New Security Foundation.
  • Cathy Bollaert and Simon Whitby (2011), ‘Biological Weapons’, The Biologist.
  • Cathy Bollaert and Simon Whitby (2011), ‘Views from the Field Online Train-the-Trainer Module in Developing Capacity in Dual-Use Bioethics and Biosecurity’, in Millet, P. (Ed), Improving Implementation of the Biological Weapons Convention: The 2007–2010 Intersessional Process, United Nations, Geneva, Switzerland.
  • Simon Whitby, Cathy Bollaert & Malcolm R. Dando (2011) Article IV: National Implementation: Education, Outreach, and Codes of Conduct, in Graham Pearson, Malcolm Dando, Nick Sims (Eds). Strengthening the Biological Weapons convention: Key Points for the Seventh Review Conference. ISBN No.
  • Malcolm Dando and Simon Whitby (2011). Dual Use Research, Biosecurity, and the Responsible Conduct of Research. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Office of the Secretary, Office of the Assistant Secretary for Health, Office of Research Integrity Newsletter. March, Volume 19, No. 2, p 5.
  • Shinomiya, N., Minehata, M., Sture, J., Whitby, S. (2011) "Implementing Biosecurity Education: Approaches, Resources and Programmes", Science and Engineering Ethics.
  • Simon Whitby and Malcolm Dando, (2010) Biosecurity Awareness-raising and Education for Life Scientists: What Should be Done Now? in Rappert, B. (ed), Education and Ethics in the Life Sciences: Strengthening the Prohibition of Biological Weapons, Australian National University Press, June.







Following the success of the previous (2014) REF Impact Case Study which came 7th in the Country in its Unit of Assessment for Impact (with colleagues in ICPS, and Prof. R.N. Cooper), Whitby is the process of drafting a REF Impact Case Study ahead of the 2020/21 REF.

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