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Scarlett Swain

Tutorials (Ptt)

Tutorials (Ptt) in the Durham Law School
PhD candidate in the Durham CELLS (Centre for Ethics and Law in the Life Sciences)


Scarlett is a full-time PhD Candidate and tutor at Durham Law School. She completed the notoriously challenging University of London International LLB Programme at the New College of Humanities. Alongside this, she completed a diploma which included business, applied ethics, and critical reasoning. She also has a Masters in Constitutional Law from the University of St. Andrews. Prior to starting her LLB, she travelled the world and worked as an entrepreneur.

Scarlett enjoys mooting. During her LLB, she co-founded the NCH Mooting Society and was President of the NCH Law Society. At St. Andrews, she was an active member of its Union Debating Society. Scarlett has spent her summers undertaking mini-pupilages and internships in Hong Kong, Cyprus, and Londons Middle Temple and Lincoln’s Inn.

Current Research

Supervised by Dr Mike Adcock and Dr Angelia Jia Wang, Scarlett’s PhD and research interest is in Intellectual Property Law, with a specific focus on patents, cellular agriculture, biotechnology, and utilitarianism. Her PhD provides a continuation from her LLB dissertation on the Lockean theory of property, for which she obtained a first. She plans to challenge the current prohibition on “patenting nature” in England and Wales. In light of this, she will explore the developing industry of cellular agriculture, specifically in regards to the patenting of meat. She plans to question whether the area of patenting biotechnology will expand, given that innovative inventions seem to be progressing. Furthermore, she plans to conduct an ethical and philosophical analysis on this issue by asking whether utilitarianism justifies the patenting of food produced by tissue engineering and biotechnology patenting more generally.