Professor Sara Fovargue

School of Law


Sara Forvargue Headshot
+44 114 222 6794

Full contact details

Professor Sara Fovargue
School of Law
Bartolomé House
Winter Street
S3 7ND

I joined the School of Law at the University of Sheffield in January 2022, having previously been Professor of Law at Lancaster University where I was the Director of Research and led the REF2021 submission. I have also taught at the Universities of Manchester and Newcastle.

Having wanted to be a barrister (specialising in medical malpractice) since I was about 14, I realised while I was studying at the Inns of Court School of Law that a career at the Bar was not for me. I completed the academic stage to qualify as a barrister but then opted to start work on my PhD rather than to complete a pupillage.

I have been teaching and researching issues relating to health care law and ethics, and family law for over 20 years and I am passionate about these subjects. I have also taught Criminal Law, English Legal Systems/Legal Methods, and Gender and the Law.

  • PhD, University of Manchester
  • LLB(Hons) Law, University of Leicester
  • non-practising barrister
Research interests

Health care law and ethics generally - specifically:

  • consent and capacity;
  • decision making for the 'vulnerable';
  • risk and regulation;
  • clinical research involving human and non-human animals;
  • developing and emerging biotechnologies (such as xenotransplantation);
  • reproduction and reproductive technologies;
  • organ donation and transplantation;
  • conscientious objection.

Family law:

  • parents, parenthood and reproductive technologies;
  • children and health;
  • children and childhood.
Research group
  • Health Care Law and Ethics
  • Family Law - especially relating to children and health.

Title/Description: The Future of Human Reproduction: New Agendas and Methods for the Humanities and Social Science

  • Awarding Body: Wellcome
  • People Involved: Professor Stephen Wilkinson (PI, Lancaster University); Dr Kirsty Dunn (CI, Lancaster University); Professor Sharon Rushton (CI, Lancaster University); Professor Elena Semino (CI, Lancaster University); Dr Emmanuel Tsekleves (CI, Lancaster University); Dr Nicola Williams (CI, Lancaster University).
  • Years Funded for: May 2022-August 2025
  • Amount Awarded (£): 1,019,767

Title/Description: When pandemic and everyday ethics collide: Supporting ethical decision-making in maternity care and paediatrics during the Covid-19 pandemic

  • Awarding Body: UKRI/AHRC Covid-19 Rapid Response funding
  • People Involved: Dr Lucy Frith (PI, University of Manchester); Dr Paul Baines (CI, University of Warwick); Dr Anna Chiumento (CI, University of Liverpool); Professor Heather Draper (CI, University of Warwick)
  • Years Funded for: 2020-2021
  • Amount Awarded (£): 258,812

Title/Description: Uterus transplantation: Law, ethics, patients and policy

  • Awarding Body: ESRC IAA
  • People Involved: Professor Stephen Wilkinson (Lancaster University); Dr Laura O'Donovan (Lancaster University); Dr Nicola Williams (Lancaster University)
  • Years Funded for: 2021
  • Amount Awarded (£): 14,180
Teaching interests
  • Health Care Law and Ethics
  • Family Law
Teaching activities

The modules I teach are:


Principles of Health Care Law and Ethics

Family Law

Professional activities
  • Joint Editor-in-Chief, Medical Law Review.
  • Member of the AHRC Peer Review College.
  • Member of the SLS EDI Committee.
  • Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts.
  • External ethics adviser on Children Palliative Care Outcome Scale (C-POS), funded by European Research Council.
  • Member the Children’s Health Ethics and Law Special Interest Group (CHELSIG).